PURPOSE: The purpose of this paper is to examine the effect of operating environment factors on the performance of Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) in Nigeria.

DESIGN/METHODOLOGY: A questionnaire survey research method is adopted for the study and logistic regression and correlation matrix analyses were used to investigate the significance contribution Political Leadership, Investors Perception, Infrastructure and Social Security on REIT dividend based performance.

FINDINGS: The study finds that there is significant correlation among Political Leadership, Infrastructure and Social Security while Investors Perception exhibits non-significant correlation with any other factor. The logistic regression shows that the factors jointly contribute significantly to REIT performance in Nigeria.

PRACTICAL IMPLICATIONS: Most studies have focused more on the effects of economic factors (size, FFO, NAV, Market Index etc), on REIT performance adopting correlation or volatility studies. This study will be useful to Industry players especially fund managers on the possible effects of external factors on REIT performance.

ORIGINALITY/VALUE OF WORK: The paper contributes to the body of knowledge on REIT performance with its special `focus on external factors influences on REIT return/dividend especially in the developing nations like Nigeria, where the operating environment is characterised with peculiar challenges of paucity of property stocks and high external factor risk.