In the Allentown, PA market in March, new home closings sank year-over-year, signifying a decline after little movement in February from the year earlier. Closings sank 24.6% from a year earlier to 49. Closings were level in February from the year earlier.

A total of 616 new homes were sold during the 12 months that ended in March, down from 632 for the year that ended in February.

Out of all housing closings, new home closings accounted for 6.5%. This is a decline 8.2% of closings a year earlier. After rising year-over-year in February, closings of new and existing homes slid year-over-year in March.

Pricing and Mortgage Trends

In March, the average price of newly sold homes declined year-over-year to $326,004 per unit, marking a 6.4% decline from the year-earlier figure. This fall is larger than the 3.1% drop in February from a year earlier.

The average mortgage size on newly sold homes slid year-over-year in contrast to the average price of new homes. The average mortgage size declined to $270,351 in March, marking a 6.7% decline compared with last year. In February 2016, average mortgage size on newly sold homes saw a 11.3% fall from a year earlier.

Other Market Trends

As a share of new home closings, single-family home closings have climbed from last year while the share belonging to attached units has fallen. Single-family home closings jumped from 55.4% of new closings in March 2015 to 57.1% of closings in March 2016. Meanwhile, attached units as a percentage of all new home closings slid to 42.9% of closings from 44.6% of closings.

For all new homes sold, the average unit size dropped 6.8% year-over-year to 2,296 square feet in March 2016. The average size of newly sold homes moved from 2,528 square feet in February 2015 to 2,230 square feet in February 2016. A drop was also seen in February 2016 when the average size of new homes sold sank 11.8% to 2,230 square feet.

Foreclosures and real estate owned (REO) closings continued to rise in March from a year earlier and stayed a drag on the market. Foreclosures and REO closings, taken together, made up 33.8% of existing home closings, up from 32.8% a year earlier. The percentage of existing home closings involving foreclosures slid to 12.8% in March from 14.1% a year earlier while REO closings as a percentage of existing home closings increased to 21.0% from 18.7%.

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