In April, the Fort Smith, AR market saw a decline year-over-year in new home closings, but the decline was less than the year-over-year decline in March. New home closings moved from 7 a year earlier to 4 after the figure moved from 6 in March 2015 to 3 in March 2016.

A total of 100 new homes were sold during the 12 months that ended in April, down from 103 for the year that ended in March.

New home closings were 4 out of the 283 total closings, a move on a percentage basis from 7 of 385 a year earlier. Following a year-over-year decline in March, closings of new and existing homes also slid year-over-year in April.

Pricing and Mortgage Trends

The average per-unit price of new homes was $167,500, compared with $213,395 last year. This followed a 29.2% fall in March from a year earlier.

Average mortgage size on new homes fell from $198,504 to $153,302. Average mortgage size on new homes went from $184,907 in March 2015 to $132,584 in March 2016.

Other Market Trends

There was no change in the composition of the new home market with regard to the types of properties sold in April 2016.

The average unit size of newly sold homes fell from 1,890 square feet a year earlier to 1,677 square feet.

Foreclosures and real estate owned (REO) closings decreased in April from a year earlier, but stayed a drag on the market. Foreclosures and REO closings, taken together, accounted for 25.8% of existing closings, lower than 32.3% a year earlier. The percentage of existing home closings involving foreclosures dropped to 12.5% in April from 15.3% a year earlier while REO closings as a percentage of existing home closings sank to 13.3% from 16.9% a year earlier.

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