Extra Space Storage Inc., a publicly traded self-storage real estate investment trust (REIT) and third-party management firm, has launched a bridge-lending program targeted at non-stabilized storage facilities. The REIT entered the finance sector to fill “a capital void in the market and make some money,” CEO Joe Margolis said during a Feb. 21 earnings conference call with financial analysts, according to the source.
Bridge loans are often referred to as interim or gap financing. They’re intended to be used as a short-term solution until a person or company secures permanent financing or meets an existing obligation. Though they offer immediate cash flow, bridge loans tend to have relatively high interest rates and are usually backed by some form of collateral, such as real estate or inventory, according to financial website Investopedia.
Though Extra Space has already issued some financing and has more loans in the pipeline, Margolis doesn’t expect the program to be a major contributor to earnings this year. “We’re getting very good reception in the marketplace, but we are just beginning,” he told analysts. “We’re going to walk before we run. We’re going to see how the market reacts to this, and I would not expect it to be a significant capital allocation in 2019.”
Extra Space doesn’t anticipate extending its program to self-storage projects that are still in development. “We don’t want to have to take over a half-finished development, but we believe there is an opportunity [with] stores that are not yet stabilized,” Margolis said.
Headquartered in Salt Lake City, Extra Space owns or operates 1,647 self-storage properties in 39 states; Washington, D.C.; and Puerto Rico. Its properties comprise approximately 1.2 million units and 125.7 million square feet of rentable space.
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