I own several, and have for at least 20 years. One unexpected benefit is that the gradual whittling away of your basis and the fact that on sale much of your gain may be recaptured as ordinary income makes you much less likely to trade. So they just hang around spewing out cash and growing in capital value.
MLPs are getting more popular, hence they are often not the obvious bargains that they tended to be back when Peter Lynch first wrote about them in the '80s. Still, REITs went up almost another 100% after I felt that I had gotten most of the gains available, so once the MLP thing gets going it could go on a long time. The O&G MLPs have been strong the last 6 months or so.
Many are in oil and gas area, in particular pipelines. storage, etc. For the most part, I prefer those which are MLP GPs, not the limited partnerships underlying. The GPs derive income mostly from ownership of LP units plus- and this is a big one-IDRs, aka incentive distribution rights
. These give the GP leverage on the LP distributions so the GP distribution though starting from a lower base often grows faster.
I don't like to name issues because then I tend to feel responsible for others, but go to these Yahoo Groups and you can learn a lot. It also helps to learn a bit about gas distribution, growth areas for drilling, etc. because one can make mistakes. I will mention one because the CEO recently bought an enormous slug of the units which tends to make me feel more comfortable- VEH.