New home closings dropped year-over-year in February in the Wichita, KS market, but there were signs of market improvement with a percentage drop less steep than in January 2016. New home closings saw a 7.1% fall from a year earlier to 26. This came after a 10.8% decline year-over-year in January.

A total of 558 new homes were sold during the 12 months that ended in February, down from 560 for the year that ended in January.

As a percentage of overall housing closings, new home closings accounted for 3.0% of overall housing closings. New home closings were 3.2% of overall closings last year. After declining in January from a year earlier, closings of new and existing homes remained level in February.

Pricing and Mortgage Trends

Average price of newly sold homes saw a 9.6% rise year-over-year in February to $275,038 per unit. This boost is smaller than the 58.7% bump in January year-over-year.

Average mortgage size on new homes rose year-over-year along with new home prices. The average mortgage size rose to $231,057 in February, marking a 12.9% hike compared with a year earlier. In January 2016, average mortgage size increased 57.0% 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 February 2016. Single-family home closings have accounted for all of new home closings while attached unit closings have represented no part of closings.

There was a 10.7% hike year-over-year in the average unit size of newly sold homes to 2,336 square feet in February 2016. The average size of newly sold homes moved from 2,191 square feet in January 2015 to 2,887 square feet in January 2016. An increase was also seen in January 2016 when the average size of new homes sold rose 31.8% to 2,887 square feet.

Foreclosures and real estate owned (REO) closings continued to decline from a year earlier in February, but did not appear to be dragging the market. Out of all existing home closings, foreclosures combined with REO closings made up 22.1% of closings, below 22.9% a year earlier. The percentage of existing home closings involving foreclosures went from 10.0% in February 2015 to 10.7% in February 2016 and REO closings as a percentage of existing home closings slid to 11.4% from 12.9% a year earlier.

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