In the Naples, FL market in February, closings of new homes climbed year-over-year, and the percentage hike was sharper than January 2016, hinting that the market may be strengthening. New home closings saw a 31.2% boost from a year earlier to 185. This came on the heels of a 19.0% boost year-over-year in January.

A total of 2,526 new homes were sold during the 12 months that ended in February, up from 2,482 for the year that ended in January.

Out of all housing closings, new home closings made up 18.9%. This is better than the 11.8% of closings a year earlier. Closings of new and existing homes declined year-over-year in February after also falling in January year-over-year.

Pricing and Mortgage Trends

In February, there was a 7.3% hike year-over-year in the average price of newly sold homes, reaching $600,439 per unit. This surge compares to a 11.6% decline in January from a year earlier.

The average mortgage size on newly sold homes grew year-over-year along with the average price of new homes. In February 2016, the average mortgage size was $395,470, a 13.9% surge from a year earlier. Average mortgage size grew 1.6% in January 2016 from a year earlier.

Other Market Trends

There has not been much movement in the composition of the market with regard of the types of properties sold. From a year ago, single-family home closings have moved from 74.5% of new home closings to 74.1% of closings while attached units have gone from 25.5% of closings to 25.9% of closings.

The average unit size of newly sold homes sank 10.9% year-over-year to 2,003 square feet in February 2016. In January, the average size of new homes sold went from 2,369 square feet a year earlier to 2,218 square feet.

Foreclosures and real estate owned (REO) closings continued to fall from a year earlier in February, but did not look to be a burden on the market. Together, foreclosures plus REO closings accounted for 12.3% of existing home closings, down from 18.8% a year earlier. The percentage of existing home closings involving foreclosures dropped to 5.4% in February from 7.8% a year earlier while REO closings as a percentage of existing home closings declined to 6.9% from 11.0% a year earlier.

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