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2 Stocks That Cut You a Check Each Month

Dan Caplinger, The Motley Fool

Dividend stocks are great for investors who need to live off the income that their portfolios generate. But one tough thing about most dividend stocks is that they typically make dividend payments only on a quarterly basis. Given that most people owe bills monthly, it takes some budgeting to make dividend payments line up to your financial needs.

As a result, monthly dividend stocks have gotten increasingly popular. Today, I'd like to introduce you to two companies that make dividend payments every month: Apple Hospitality REIT (NYSE: APLE) and Whitestone REIT (NYSE: WSR). Even though both of these companies are real estate investment trusts, they have very different focus areas that could complement each other well in an income-driven portfolio.

Make money while others are sleeping

Apple Hospitality makes its money from travelers who stay in hotels. The company invests in what are known as select-service hotel properties, which occupy a valuable middle ground between the bargain-basement motel options that appeal to value-conscious vacationers and the luxury hotels that cater to upscale clients. Among the hotel chains that you'll find in Apple Hospitality's real estate portfolio are the Embassy Suites and Hampton brands from Hilton (NYSE: HLT) as well as Marriott's (NASDAQ: MAR) Courtyard, Residence Inn, and Towneplace Suites concepts.

The biggest benefit of these midrange options is that they tend to be favorites among business travelers, who often spend on expense accounts and therefore aren't as price-sensitive as those staying on their own dime. In addition, Apple Hospitality has some protection against tough times, because when budgets get stretched, those who would ordinarily stay at luxury hotels tend to downgrade to the properties that the REIT operates, offsetting downward pressure from its ordinary clientele.

For dividend investors, Apple Hospitality's 7.4% dividend yield is an attractive element of its investment proposition. Currently, the REIT pays $0.10 per share on a monthly basis, and it's sustained that level of dividend throughout its four-year history. That kind of reliability is appealing to those who rely on income, and the healthy U.S. economy bodes well for Apple Hospitality's prospects for the foreseeable future.

A go-to place for investors

Whitestone REIT also invests in real estate, but it's a much different type of real estate than you'll find at Apple Hospitality. Whitestone investors in what it calls neighborhood "go-to" centers, offering a mix of businesses that go beyond simply serving commercial purposes to let visitors connect to form a true community. With the goal of offering convenience to its patrons, Whitestone tries to craft its properties to the local needs of the communities where they're located. The Houston-based real estate investment trust has properties in Texas, Arizona, and Illinois, and it caters to an upscale audience with above-average income that can afford to pay up for services and experiences.

Retail center and parking facility with Houston Galleria skyline behind.

Image source: Whitestone REIT.

The company's most recent community-centered property, BLVD Place, is a good example. On its face, the property seems to offer a typical mix of tenants, including a grocery store, a bank, restaurants, and retail shops. But with its location in the prestigious Galleria area of Houston, the businesses at BLVD Place are all geared toward the higher-end customer, with sellers of jewelry and fur coats among tenants.

Whitestone has a lot to offer shareholders as well. With a $0.095 per share monthly dividend, the REIT currently has a yield of 9.5%. That payout has been consistent since late 2010, and with shoppers demanding innovative new ideas for retail establishments, Whitestone's focus is in line with shifting consumer trends and holds a lot of promise.

Get the income you need -- when you need it

Monthly dividend stocks are great for those trying to match up their income with their expenses. With companies like Apple Hospitality and Whitestone making regular, reliable monthly dividend payments, they can help you get the money you need at the right time.

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Dan Caplinger has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Marriott International. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.