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What You Need To Know Before Investing In Sabra Health Care REIT Inc (NASDAQ:SBRA)

Seth Doty

Sabra Health Care REIT Inc is a US$4.15b mid-cap, real estate investment trust (REIT) based in Irvine, United States. REITs are basically a portfolio of income-producing real estate investments, which are owned and operated by management of that trust company. They have to meet certain requirements in order to become a REIT, meaning they should be analyzed a different way. In this commentary, I’ll take you through some of the things I look at when assessing SBRA.

Check out our latest analysis for Sabra Health Care REIT

Funds from Operations (FFO) is a higher quality measure of SBRA’s earnings compared to net income. This term is very common in the REIT investing world as it provides a cleaner look at its cash flow from daily operations by excluding impact of one-off activities or non-cash items such as depreciation. For SBRA, its FFO of US$133.5m makes up 34.4% of its gross profit, which means over a third of its earnings are high-quality and recurring.

NasdaqGS:SBRA Historical Debt September 25th 18

In order to understand whether SBRA has a healthy balance sheet, we have to look at a metric called FFO-to-total debt. This tells us how long it will take SBRA to pay off its debt using its income from its main business activities, and gives us an insight into SBRA’s ability to service its borrowings. With a ratio of 3.9%, the credit rating agency Standard & Poor would consider this as aggressive risk. This would take SBRA 25.43 years to pay off using just operating income, which is a long time, and risk increases with time. But realistically, companies have many levers to pull in order to pay back their debt, beyond operating income alone.

Next, interest coverage ratio shows how many times SBRA’s earnings can cover its annual interest payments. Usually the ratio is calculated using EBIT, but for REITs, it’s better to use FFO divided by net interest. This is similar to the above concept, but looks at the nearer-term obligations. With an interest coverage ratio of 1.51x, SBRA is not generating an appropriate amount of cash from its borrowings. Typically, a ratio of greater than 3x is seen as safe.

In terms of valuing SBRA, FFO can also be used as a form of relative valuation. Instead of the P/E ratio, P/FFO is used instead, which is very common for REIT stocks. In SBRA’s case its P/FFO is 30.52x, compared to the long-term industry average of 16.5x, meaning that it is overvalued.

Next Steps:

In this article, I’ve taken a look at Funds from Operations using various metrics, but it is certainly not sufficient to derive an investment decision based on this value alone. Sabra Health Care REIT can bring about diversification for your portfolio, but before you decide to invest, take a look at the other aspects you must consider before investing:

  1. Future Outlook: What are well-informed industry analysts predicting for SBRA’s future growth? Take a look at our free research report of analyst consensus for SBRA’s outlook.
  2. Valuation: What is SBRA worth today? Is the stock undervalued, even when its growth outlook is factored into its intrinsic value? The intrinsic value infographic in our free research report helps visualize whether SBRA is currently mispriced by the market.
  3. Other High-Performing Stocks: Are there other stocks that provide better prospects with proven track records? Explore our free list of these great stocks here.

To help readers see past the short term volatility of the financial market, we aim to bring you a long-term focused research analysis purely driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis does not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements.

The author is an independent contributor and at the time of publication had no position in the stocks mentioned. For errors that warrant correction please contact the editor at editorial-team@simplywallst.com.