What is a Private Mortgage REIT: An Overview

What is a Private Mortgage REIT: An Overview

Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) have gained popularity as an investment vehicle for those looking to invest in real estate without directly owning physical properties. While many are familiar with traditional REITs that invest in income-generating real estate assets such as apartment buildings, shopping centers, and office complexes, a less-known but equally important segment of the REIT market is Private Mortgage REITs. In this article, we will explore what Private Mortgage REITs are, how they function, and what sets them apart from other types of REITs. 

Key Characteristics of Private Mortgage REITs 

1- Mortgage Investments: Private Mortgage REITs primarily invest in a portfolio of mortgage-related assets. This can include residential mortgages, commercial mortgages, or a combination of both.

2- Income Generation: Similar to traditional REITs, Private Mortgage REITs aim to generate income for investors. They do this by earning interest income from the mortgage loans they hold in their portfolio.

3- Diversification: These REITs often maintain diversified portfolios of mortgages to spread risk. They may invest in mortgages originated for various purposes, including residential, commercial, or even specialized areas like real estate development financing.

4- Leverage: Private Mortgage REITs commonly use leverage or borrowed capital to increase the size of their mortgage portfolio and potentially boost returns. However, leverage can also amplify risks.

5- Private Placement: Unlike publicly traded REITs, Private Mortgage REITs are typically not listed on stock exchanges. They are often offered through private placements, making them accessible to accredited investors or institutions.

6- Regulatory Oversight: Private Mortgage REITs are subject to regulatory oversight by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) or equivalent regulatory bodies in other countries, similar to publicly traded REITs.

Key Differences from Traditional REITs 

1- Focus on Debt: While traditional REITs focus on income-generating properties, Private Mortgage REITs primarily deal with mortgage loans and debt securities, making them more sensitive to changes in interest rates and credit conditions.

2- Income Source: Traditional REITs derive income from rent payments, while Private Mortgage REITs earn interest income from mortgage loans. The income stream from mortgage-related assets can be subject to prepayment risk and credit risk.

3- Liquidity: Private Mortgage REITs are typically less liquid than publicly traded REITs since they are not traded on stock exchanges. Investors may have limited opportunities to buy or sell shares.

4- Risk Profile: The risk profile of Private Mortgage REITs can vary depending on the quality of the mortgage loans in their portfolio and their use of leverage. Investors should carefully assess these factors.


Private Mortgage REITs offer an alternative way to invest in the real estate market by focusing on mortgage-related assets rather than physical properties. While they can provide income-generating opportunities, potential investors should be aware of the specific risks associated with mortgage investments, such as interest rate sensitivity and credit risk. Due diligence, careful assessment of investment strategies, and consultation with financial professionals are essential steps before considering an investment in a Private Mortgage REIT. 


About the Author 

Brock VandenBerg is the President of TaliMar Financial and Fund Manager of TaliMar Income Fund I. Mr. VandenBerg started investing in individual trust deeds in 2008, providing capital to real estate investors taking advantage on the housing crisis. He soon brought in outside investors to share in this lucrative opportunity to earn above market returns. After funding over $375 million in short-term loans and attracting over 500 investors, Mr. VandenBerg launched TaliMar Income Fund I in 2021 to offer investors a much more efficient way to invest in individual trust deeds. Currently, TaliMar Income Fund I invests on behalf of over 220 individual investors with over $60 million in assets under management.  


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