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The influx in rental demand has also pushed developers to build almost 1 million apartments in the U.S. over the next three years, compared to the nearly 900,000 constructed in the previous three years.

Industry observers also argue that REITs could see continued strength in 2016 as the real estate asset category is elevated to the 11th headline sector in the Global Industry Classification Standard, or GICS. As REITs gain a sector classification, investors may no longer relegate real estate as an alternative investment and funnel more money into the area as part of a diversified equity portfolio.

RWR has a dividend yield of almost 3.2%. The ETF charges 0.25% per year, or $25 for each $10,000 invested.

SPDR Dow Jones REIT ETF