In the Birmingham, AL market, new home closings declined year-over-year in May, and there were signs of worsening market conditions as the percentage fall was steeper than April 2016. Closings dropped 73.8% from a year earlier to 21. This was after the housing market saw a 59.4% fall year-over-year in April.

A total of 423 new homes were sold during the 12 months that ended in May, down from 482 for the year that ended in April.

As a percentage of overall housing closings, new home closings represented 1.0%. This is down from the 4.4% of closings a year earlier. Closings of new and existing homes climbed year-over-year in May after also rising in April year-over-year.

Pricing and Mortgage Trends

In May, the average price of newly sold homes jumped year-over-year to $277,215 per unit, a 2.2% hike. This rise compares to a 20.3% decline in April from a year earlier.

The average mortgage size on new homes moved north year-over-year along with new home prices. The average mortgage size rose to $272,335 in May, marking a 15.0% hike compared with a year earlier. In April 2016, average mortgage size on newly sold homes saw a 3.6% drop from a year earlier.

Other Market Trends

As a percentage of new home closings, attached unit closings have grown from last year while single-family home closings have dropped. Attached unit closings increased from no part of all closings in May 2015 to 9.5% of closings in May 2016. Conversely, the share belonging to single-family homes declined to 90.5% of closings from all of closings.

The average unit size of newly sold homes fell 5.8% year-over-year to 2,403 square feet in May 2016. The average size of newly sold homes moved from 2,713 square feet in April 2015 to 2,538 square feet in April 2016.

Foreclosures and real estate owned (REO) closings continued to fall from a year earlier in May, but did not look to be a burden on the market. Foreclosures and REO closings, taken together, made up 21.2% of existing closings, lower than 24.5% a year earlier. The percentage of existing home closings involving foreclosures declined to 9.4% in May from 14.4% a year earlier while REO closings as a percentage of existing home closings rose to 11.9% from 10.1%.

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