In September, the Augusta, GA market saw a drop year-over-year in new home closings, swinging downward off a year-over-year lift in August 2016. There was a 33.1% fall in new home closings from a year earlier. In comparison, new home closings in the same month last year saw a 5.8% rise year-over-year in August.

A total of 1,295 new homes were sold during the 12 months that ended in September, down from 1,340 for the year that ended in August.

As a percentage of overall housing closings, new home closings represented 9.7%. This is down from the a year earlier when new home closings represented 13.2% of total closings. Following a year-over-year rise in August, closings of new and existing homes slid year-over-year in September.

Pricing and Mortgage Trends

The average price of new homes increased year-over-year in September to $256,406 per unit, a rise of 11.7%. This lift is better than the 2.4% gain in August year-over-year.

The average mortgage size on new homes moved north year-over-year along with new home prices. It climbed 12.9% in September from a year earlier to $245,539. Average mortgage size went from $230,839 in August 2015 to $231,488 in August 2016.

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. The share of new home closings belonging to single-family homes rose from 97.8% in September 2015 to 98.9% of closings in September 2016. Conversely, the share of new home closings belonging to attached units fell to 1.1% of closings from 2.2% of closings.

For all new homes sold, the average unit size grew 14.1% year-over-year to 2,997 square feet in September 2016. An increase was also seen in August 2016 when the average size of new homes sold jumped 1.9% to 2,932 square feet. In August, the average size of new homes sold went from 2,876 square feet a year earlier to 2,932 square feet.

Foreclosures and real estate owned (REO) closings continued to drop from a year earlier in September, but did not look to be a burden on the market. Combined, foreclosures plus REO closings made up 23.0% of existing home closings, below 27.7% a year earlier. The percentage of existing home closings involving foreclosures dropped to 10.4% in September from 15.4% a year earlier and REO closings moved from 12.3% of existing home closings in September 2015 to 12.6% in September 2016.

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