Closings of new homes in the Bakersfield, CA market increased year-over-year in August, and the percentage gain was sharper than July 2015, hinting that the market may be strengthening. New home closings saw a 31.9% boost from a year earlier to 178. This came on the heels of a 20.3% hike year-over-year in July.

A total of 1,636 new homes were sold during the 12 months that ended in August, up from 1,593 for the year that ended in July.

Out of all housing closings, new home closings represented 14.6%. This marks a rise from 11.9% of total closings a year earlier. For new and existing homes, closings increased year-over-year in August after also increasing in July year-over-year.

Pricing and Mortgage Trends

For newly sold homes, the average price moved from $292,176 in August 2014 to $293,267 in August 2015. This came after a 3.6% bump in July year-over-year.

In August 2015, average mortgage size on newly sold homes moved from $262,668 to $260,113 from August 2014. Average mortgage size grew 3.6% in July 2015 from a year earlier.

Other Market Trends

There was no change in the composition of the new home market with regard to the types of properties sold in August 2015. Single-family home closings have made up all of new home closings while attached unit closings have accounted for no part of closings.

There was a 9.7% decline year-over-year in the average unit size of newly sold homes to 1,883 square feet in August 2015. In July, the average size of new homes sold went from 1,666 square feet a year earlier to 1,920 square feet.

Foreclosures and real estate owned (REO) closings continued to decline from a year earlier in August, but did not look to be a burden on the market. Combined, foreclosures plus REO closings made up 18.3% of existing home closings, below 21.3% a year earlier. The percentage of existing home closings involving foreclosures fell to 8.1% in August from 9.7% a year earlier while REO closings as a percentage of existing home closings dropped to 10.2% from 11.6% a year earlier.

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