Newton, MA-based Office Properties Income Trust has begun implementing its financing strategy for its merger with Diversified Healthcare Trust, the real estate investment trust announced Friday. OPI has closed on a $30.7 million loan secured by a 266,000-square-foot, 100% government occupied property in Landover, MD.

DHC, with a senior living operating portfolio that includes 237 communities with 25,346 living units, entered into an agreement in April to merge with OPI. The merger is expected to be completed in the third quarter, resulting in a REIT named Diversified Properties Trust.

“This loan serves as a testament to OPI’s highly financeable portfolio of properties. The fact that we were able to readily execute this mortgage in today’s market conditions speaks to the financial community’s confidence in OPI and our high-quality assets,” OPI Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer Matthew Brown said Friday in a statement. “We plan to leverage our high-quality portfolio to finance our acquisition of DHC on more attractive terms than the bridge provides.” 

In the merger deal, OPI will acquire all of the outstanding common shares of DHC in an all-share transaction, which was unanimously recommended by special committees of the respective boards of OPI and DHC and then unanimously approved by the respective full boards.

DHC President and CEO Jennifer Francis earlier this month said that the merger is “the best path forward for DHC,” in light of the REIT’s ith $700 million of debt maturing over the next 12 months and the pace of the senior housing operating portfolio’s recovery being critical to the its ability to refinance the debt. The words echoed ones she had said in April.

The merger has met with some opposition, however. Shareholder Flat Footed and its affiliates are publicly pushing for alternatives.

“We believe the board of trustees has failed DHC’s stakeholders by pursuing the proposed merger, which would unnecessarily burden the company with OPI’s rapidly declining commercial office properties,” the shareholders wrote in a public letter posted last week. The deal, they said, disproportionately benefits OPI and The RMR Group “at DHC’s direct expense.”