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REIT Index funds or ETFs - any advice?
Old 12-02-2007, 04:23 PM   #1
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REIT Index funds or ETFs - any advice?


I want to add REITs to my portfolio and have been researching REIT Index funds. I found that there are multiple REIT indexes and funds/etfs that follow them. I disregarded any ETF with low trading volume and funds with loads.

The Vanguard fund/ETF follows the MSCIŽ US REIT Index.
The iShares Dow Jones US Real Estate Index fund follows the similarly named index.
The Dow Jones Wilshire REIT ETF mirrors the Dow Jones Wilshire REIT Index.
The iShares Cohen & Steers Realty Majors Index Fund tracks the similarly named index.
DFA's fund tracks its own index

Moreover, the fees and 3 & 5 year performance numbers are different enough for the funds to confuse me. (data from

Any advice?

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Old 12-02-2007, 04:57 PM   #2
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icf is my first choice with rwr my 2nd. i will probley start to buy icf on the next drop

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Old 12-02-2007, 06:22 PM   #3
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I figure all else being equal - go with low costs - so I own VNQ.
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Old 12-02-2007, 07:22 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by FinanceGeek View Post
I figure all else being equal - go with low costs - so I own VNQ.
Me too, and now is a good time to be buying, it just recently bounced off a 52-week low.

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Old 12-02-2007, 10:10 PM   #5
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If you plan on adding money to your REIT position regularly, go with a fund (no transaction fees but higher expense ratio). If you plan on investing a lump sum, go with an ETF (transaction fees but lower expense ratio). I personally use the VG REIT index fund because I DCA into it every month and after shopping around I found it to be the best REIT fund choice for me. I don't really use ETFs, so I can't help you there.
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Old 12-03-2007, 01:40 PM   #6
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Btw its much better to own VG REIT in a tax deferred fund.

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Old 12-03-2007, 03:22 PM   #7
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I have had VG REIT fund in my Roth IRA for a number of years. It has preformed as I expected and is as volatile as I assumed it would be. I have been making monthly contributions for years and as long as I continue to receive earned income, I will continue to add to it in this manner. I'll know in about 30 years if this was a good idea.

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