Two REITs are taking their sharing of the manufactured housing market and their joint management a step further, merging into a single entity.

Terry Considine, chairman for the REITs, says it’s just common sense that Asset Investors Inc. and Commercial Investors Inc. should function as one operation. The merger brings with a name change to American Land Lease Inc., now trading under the symbol ANL on the New York Stock Exchange.

CFO David Becker told the merger was overwhelmingly approved by 80% of the shareholders who voted. Becker says ANL most likely is the smallest REIT in the nation, with a portfolio of 33 manufactured home communities and 6,300 developed sites. Most of its portfolio are retirement communities are located in Phoenix and Florida.

Becker told that the “growth plans at this point are to lease a number of sites inside our communities that are not filled with homes. We want to convince people to buy homes and then we’ll absorb them.”

Considine, a Denver businessman, bought the companies just four years ago from Denver-based MDC Holdings Inc., parent of Richmond American Homes, the largest home builder in Colorado. Considine convinced his board to shift the REITs’ investment strategy from buying pools of mortgages to manufactured housing, resulting in a liquidation of its mortgage-backed securities interests.

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