COVID-19 AND ITS EXPECTED IMPACT ON CARE PROPERTY INVEST
The outbreak of COVID-19 in early 2020 and the measures taken to contain the virus do not have a significant impact on the 1st quarter of 2021.
IMPACT ON THE GLOBAL RESULT STATEMENT
Care Property Invest currently has no significant backlog of contractual rent payments due as a result of the COVID-19 crisis, nor any rent-free periods or rent reductions granted to its tenants. Despite the fact that overall, there was a lower effective occupancy in the residential care centres in 2020 and the 1st quarter of 2021, they have always remained operational with strict precautions and the COVID-19 crisis has therefore not had any impact on the payment of rental fees by the operators to the Company. On the one hand, the explanation can be found in the overall limited decrease in actual occupancy, which, since the summer and the end of the intake stop, has increased again over the entire portfolio. On the other hand, the explanation lies in the qualitative tenant base of the Company and the governmental support for the sector in the regions and countries where the Company is active. Nevertheless, Care Property Invest continues to closely monitor the actual occupancy rate and the progress of the vaccinations of residents of residential care centres, which is considered a priority.
IMPACT ON THE BALANCE SHEET
Valuation of the property portfolio
Valuation of the property portfolio
The valuation reports of the external independent valuation experts for the 1st quarter of 2021 for the entire portfolio of investment properties show a constant trend. There is no question of a downward revaluation of the portfolio of investment properties as a result of the COVID-19 crisis as at 31 March 2021. Globally, there was even an upward revaluation of the entire portfolio amounting to €2,785,213.
As at 31 March 2021, Care Property Invest’s debt ratio was 44.94%. Despite the COVID-19 crisis, the Company succeeded, by means of a contribution in kind, in reducing its debt ratio compared to the beginning of the financial year (as at 31 December 2020 the debt ratio was 46.31%) in the first quarter of 2021. The available margin up to a debt ratio of 60%, which Care Property Invest has agreed with its credit providers in covenants as a maximum debt ratio, amounts to €308.5 million as at 31 March 2021. The principal amount of loans to be repaid in the remaining quarters of the 2021 financial year is only €32.4 million of which €2.4 million actually has to be repaid and the remainder can be rolled over at the Company’s request.
Care Property Invest has an MTN programme, which was increased from €200 million to €300 million in the first quarter. As at 31 March 2021, Care Property Invest had €118 million outstanding as commercial paper, which was more than 100% covered by a combination of specific, associated back-up lines and available headroom on other undrawn credit lines. Care Property Invest would like to point out that it can still roll over commercial paper at a total cost to the Company of 10 bp.
The fact that Care Property Invest continues to have access to additional credit facilities demonstrates the confidence that credit providers have in Care Property Invest, its business and its management.
For 2021, the Company thus had a solid basis in terms of liquidity and debt ratio. The contribution in kind of the project ‘Résidence des Ardennes’ in Attert and the increase of the MTN programme to €300 million at the beginning of 2021 further strengthen the Company’s position. Nevertheless, developments in the sector and among tenants are closely monitored, as well as the broader impact of the COVID-19 crisis and the measures and vaccination strategy. In the longer term, the demand for healthcare real estate driven by demographic developments remains unaffected by the COVID-19 crisis. This crisis has only underlined the importance of good care for the elderly.