The Ames, IA market saw a rise in new home closings in April year-over-year, and the increase was greater than March 2016. New home closings moved from 6 a year earlier to 11 after the figure moved from 6 in March 2015 to 9 in March 2016.

A total of 113 new homes were sold during the 12 months that ended in April, up from 108 for the year that ended in March.

New home closings were 11 of the 115 total closings, up on a percentage basis from 6 of 116 a year earlier. Closings of new and existing homes remained steady in April after rising in March year-over-year.

Pricing and Mortgage Trends

The average value of newly sold homes in April 2016 was $269,191, down from last year's $312,267. This followed a 1.4% fall in March from a year earlier.

Average mortgage size on newly sold homes saw a decline year-over-year from $264,209 to $207,148. Average mortgage size on new homes went from $200,609 in March 2015 to $222,365 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 2,467 square feet a year earlier to 1,574 square feet.

Foreclosures and real estate owned (REO) closings continued to decline from a year earlier in April, but did not appear to be dragging the market. Together, foreclosures plus REO closings accounted for 13.5% of existing home closings, down from 13.6% a year earlier. The percentage of existing home closings involving foreclosures rose to 5.8% in April from 3.6% a year earlier while REO closings as a percentage of existing home closings sank to 7.7% from 10.0% a year earlier.

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