United Hampshire US REIT collects over 80% of retail base rent in June in wake of lockdowns

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United Hampshire US REIT has achieved over 80% of retail tenant base rent collection for the month of June 2020.

Retail tenants comprising 91% of the total base rental income were open for business in June 2020 in line with the easing of lockdowns across the US.

As at 30 June 2020, approximately 70% of the tenants that were previously closed in April 2020 have reopened for business, said the REIT.

Notably, COVID-19 transmissions are trending down in New York, New Jersey, Maryland, and Massachusetts, where 19 of the REIT’s 22 properties are located.

These properties represent approximately 81% of the REIT’s IPO portfolio by appraised value.

Meanwhile, the REIT’s three properties in Florida and North Carolina, where COVID-19 cases have recently been increasing, are also open.

Rent relief

The REIT has received rental relief requests from certain tenants whose businesses have been adversely affected by COVID-19.

The requests are being assessed on a case-by-case basis and the REIT will provide further details on the financial impact of the rental relief in its 1H results announcement.

As part of the rental relief discussions, the manager is also in talks with certain retail tenants on potential lease extensions which would be accretive to the overall weighted average lease expiry.

Self-storage

The REIT’s self-storage properties experienced a steady upward trend in leasing activity for the month of June 2020.

As at 29 June 2020, Millburn Self-Storage and Carteret Self-Storage have achieved occupancy levels of approximately 65% and 94% by units occupied, respectively.

This an increase from the previously announced occupancy levels of approximately 60% and 91% respectively.

For the two self-storage properties with top-ups, Elizabeth Self-Storage has leased 157 units as at 29 June 2020, a 67% increase as compared to an earlier announcement on 2 June 2020.

The construction of Perth Amboy Self-Storage has been delayed slightly due to the lockdown and is expected to be completed in July 2020 instead of 2Q 2020.

This is not expected to have a material impact as Perth Amboy contributes less than 1% of the REIT’s gross revenue for forecast period 2020, said the REIT.

The Hampshire sponsor has put in place top-pp agreements for both the Elizabeth Self- Storage and Perth Amboy Self-Storage for up to USD2,524,356 and USD2,198,123 respectively, for a period of up to four years from the date of completion of the purchase and sale agreements.

This will bolster the stability of these projects which are new to the market and also help to mitigate any potential impact on pace of lease-up as a result of the pandemic, said the REIT.

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