Public Storage

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Aptly-named self-storage REIT Public Storage ( PSA) owns more than 140 million square feet of storage units spread throughout 38 U.S. states and parts of Western Europe. That large geographic footprint translates into an equally large dividend payout. Last week, the firm announced a 15.8% payout increase, bringing its dividend to an annual 3.28% yield.

It's important to think of REITs like PSA as income instruments rather than ways to get exposure to the real estate market. While PSA's balance sheet ultimately comes down to commercial real estate, the firm's high occupancy rate and obligation to pass through the vast majority of income as dividends make the firm a cash-generation machine.

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To be sure, PSA's dividend engine isn't quite as bulletproof as some rival REITs. The firm has exposure to consumers and lacks the ironclad leases that commercial REITs enjoy.

Even so, PSA has clearly been able to perform at a high level in the last few years. As demand for storage units remains high, so too should demand for shares of PSA.

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