Warren Buffett invests in a wide range of industries through the conglomerate Berkshire Hathaway (BRK.A -0.36%) (BRK.B 0.11%), real estate included. Yet only one real estate investment trust (REIT) holds a position within its portfolio: Net lease REIT STORE Capital (STOR).

Earlier this fall, the REIT announced it was being bought out by the private company Blue Owl Capital. This leaves investors on the hunt for the next best thing.

Here's a closer look at net lease REIT National Retail Properties (NNN 0.31%) and why it's a fantastic alternative for those who missed out on buying Buffett's favorite REIT.

An equal second

National Retail Properties and STORE Capital are both equity REITs that own, acquire, and lease single-tenant retail properties on long-term net leases. These leases last anywhere from seven to more than 10 years and pass most of the responsibilities of the property onto the tenant.

Both REITs lease properties to tenants, including larger investment-grade tenants, across a diverse range of industries. Things like convenience stores, restaurants, child centers, automotive repairs and service centers, health clubs, car washes, and theaters, along with countless others. At the close of the third quarter of 2022, STORE Capital had roughly 3,000 properties in its portfolio across 49 states, while National Retail Properties has over 3,400 properties in 48 states.

Investors can benefit from the security and reliable growth found in single-tenant properties. Single-tenant properties have an extremely low turnover rate. The predictability in a tenant's location helps retain business and is why your local banking branch or the 7-eleven around the corner from your house has been there for 10 to 20 years. Over the last 15 years, 84% of National Retail Properties' tenants renewed their leases and the company's portfolio never fell below 96.4% occupancy -- a testament to the dependability of its business model.

Does National Retail Properties deliver like STORE Capital?

NNN Total Return Level Chart

NNN Total Return Level data by YCharts

STORE Capital has outperformed National Retail Properties since 2014 when STORE Capital went public. Comparing the companies over the last eight years 1-for-1 makes National Retail Properties seem far behind. But if you look at a wider view of the company across its 28-year tenure, you'll see it's performed admirably -- outperforming the S&P 500. It's also raised its dividend for 33 years in a row. Right now it yields around 4.7%, which is in line with STORE Capital. 

NNN Total Return Level Chart

NNN Total Return Level data by YCharts

National Retail Properties' portfolio remains in a strong position, with its third-quarter 2022 earnings seeing growth in revenue, funds from operations (FFO), and net earnings. The company is ramping up acquisitions having spent $587 million to acquire 154 new properties in the nine months ended 2022.

Given National Retail Properties' comparable business model, healthy balance sheet, and attractive yield that is likely to keep growing, it's a solid investment if you missed out on buying STORE Capital.