SCPI: Performance, Dividends, Fees… 6 Changes to Know in 2022

Total real estate income, a new metric for SCPI. Photo courtesy of GettyImages.

Aspim, the French Association of Real Estate Investment Companies, has taken a close look at the communication regarding civil real estate investment companies (SCPI). The goal is to make it more readable and understandable for investors. Thus, the market value distribution rate (TDVM) was replaced by the “old formula” distribution rate. The amount of dividends must now be reported “gross” and there is a new metric: global real estate yield (RGI). ASPIM has also improved the transparency of fees and the categorization of SCPI.

Summary:

  • Summary

  • Payout rate replaces TDVM

  • The distribution rate is calculated from the gross dividend

  • Birth of Global Return Real Estate (RGI)

  • The financial occupancy rate of SCPI facilities is changing

  • The internal rate of return (IRR) remains unchanged for SCPI.

  • Greater transparency regarding fees and investment topics

Summary

  • Payout rate replaces TDVM

  • The distribution rate is calculated from the gross dividend

  • Birth of Global Return Real Estate

  • The financial occupancy rate of SCPI facilities is changing

  • The internal rate of return remains unchanged for SCPI.

  • Greater transparency regarding fees and investment topics

Payout rate replaces TDVM

To facilitate the measurement and comparison of the performance of different SCPIs, the Market Value Allocation Rule (TDVM), introduced in 2012, has been abandoned. Indeed, this indicator did not correspond to anything specific for investors. The annual return was measured by the ratio of dividends paid to the “average share price”. However, the latter was equal to the average for the financial year of purchase prices (including duties and expenses) registered in the primary and/or secondary markets, weighted by trade volumes. This cannot be verified by the individual investor.

From January 1, 2022, TDVM will be replaced by a distribution tariff. The latter is simply equal to the ratio between the dividend paid during a financial year and the subscription price on January 1 of that financial year. For example, when a €10 dividend is paid by SCPI, whose share is valued at €200 on January 1st, the distribution ratio is 5% (10/200×100).

Know

When SCPIs have an incomplete fiscal year, they can no longer publish an annual split ratio. They simply have to tell the unit holders (subscribers, also called SCPI partners) the amount of the dividend in euros at a share price of 100%.

The distribution rate is calculated from the gross dividend

Management companies are now required to report gross tax on dividends. Thus, the distribution rate must also be calculated before taxes. For Aspim, this rule applies to both French SCPI and European SCPI. Until now, there was no framework in this area, and the European SCPI published their TDVMs net of taxes. For the latter, local taxation is applied and without double taxation of the depositor. This mechanism had the advantage of being simple and transparent, even if for Aspim it did not allow comparison of the French SCPI with the European SCPI.

Birth of Global Return Real Estate (RGI)

Aspim approved the creation of Real Estate Global Return (RGI). The latter is equal to the sum of the distribution coefficient for year N and the change in the cost of sales per unit of output for year N compared to year N-1. For example, when SCPI has an allocation ratio of 4% and its share price has been overvalued by 5%, the RGI is 9%. Unlike the distribution ratio, the RGI is intended to be published on a deferred basis after voting by the partners (SCPI unit holders) to determine the realizable value for each SCPI unit.

This metric is intended to enable investors to measure the performance of their investment in SCPI based on both returns and their capital valuation. It is inspired by SCI and OPCI performance monitoring. This allows managers who raise their share price to report a more flattering figure than a mechanically low distribution rate.

Know

The price of SCPI’s share must correspond to the assessed value of its real estate, to which other assets (cash, investments) are added. Management companies can no longer take liberties with this rule.

The financial occupancy rate of SCPI facilities is changing

In the new Aspim methodology, financial occupancy has been changed to better reflect the real vacancy rate (the period during which a property is not rented out). As such, it no longer takes work periods into account when calculating vacant properties.

The calculation of the financial employment ratio corresponds to the ratio between the actual amount of rent and the amount potentially billed if all assets are actually leased and occupied during a certain period. The occupancy rate should always appear in the information documents sent out by the management company to investors.

The internal rate of return (IRR) remains unchanged for SCPI.

After overhauling SCPI’s financial communications, Aspim maintained its internal rate of return (IRR). This indicator takes into account debt, assets under management and all expenditures of SCPI. According to the association, this remains a reliable indicator of its long-term effectiveness.

IRR can be measured over different time horizons (eg 3, 5 or 10 years). Thus, it allows SCPI to be compared over time. Thus, IRR is presented as a decision aid, even if it is not easy for retail investors to understand.

Greater transparency regarding fees and investment topics

As of January 1, 2022, SCPI has become more transparent about fees charged. All expenses of the subscriber (shareholder) in favor of the management company must be reflected in the commercial documents of the SCPI.

In particular, these costs must be as follows:

  • Subscription fee.

  • Management fee.

  • The cost of selling and acquiring real estate.

  • The cost of monitoring and managing work.

  • The cost of selling shares.

  • More generally, “any additional expenses are decided at the general meeting”.

The SCPI categories have also changed. The seven SCPI typologies now reveal the dominance of assets in each:

  • Office SCPIs.

  • SCP trade.

  • Residential construction projects (including managed real estate).

  • SCPI Tourism, Hotels and Leisure (including outdoor accommodation).

  • SCPI logistics and business premises (including production premises).

  • health and education SIDs (including nursing homes, health centres, schools or kindergartens).

  • SCPIs called alternatives (all other SCPIs).

3,000 euros per square meter will soon be overstepped for residential property

This new paradigm could encourage property managers to create SCPIs investing in residential real estate in mid-sized cities to capitalize on the potential for real estate revaluation. However, for this trend will have to be confirmed in the medium or long term. Indeed, one of the main selection criteria for SCPI managers remains occupancy. Currently, this figure remains higher in major cities or on their outskirts, especially in the Paris area.

According to Meilleurs Agents, in France, the average price per square meter in an old building rose to 2,993 euros as of January 1, 2022. Indeed, the Covid-19 epidemic has shuffled the cards, prompting certain households to move to larger homes with exteriors. However, the latter are more accessible outside of big cities.

Real estate prices have a general tendency to stagnate in France’s largest cities such as Paris or Lyon. On the contrary, after the health crisis, medium-sized cities have shown real dynamism. Some rural areas are even returning to a significant increase in demand and, consequently, prices.

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