In the Abilene, TX market in February, new home closings declined year-over-year, but the decline was less than the year-over-year decline in January. New home closings moved from 18 a year earlier to 1 after the figure moved from 20 in January 2015 to 1 in January 2016.

On a percentage basis, new home closings as a part of total closings decreased to 0.5% from 6.9% a year earlier. Closings of new and existing homes dropped year-over-year in February after also falling in January year-over-year.

Pricing and Mortgage Trends

The average price of new homes rose to $313,750 from last year's $252,313. This came after a 2.3% fall in January from a year earlier.

From the year-ago figure of $233,754, the average mortgage size on new homes moved up to $251,000. Average mortgage size on new homes went from $211,843 in January 2015 to $180,000 in January 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 February 2016.

The average unit size of newly sold homes fell from 2,169 square feet a year earlier to 1,713 square feet.

Foreclosures and real estate owned (REO) closings increased in February from a year earlier and did not appear to be dragging the market. Together, foreclosures plus REO closings represented 18.2% of existing home closings, up from 12.3% a year earlier. The percentage of existing home closings involving foreclosures rose to 10.0% in February from 8.6% a year earlier while REO closings as a percentage of existing home closings climbed to 8.1% from 3.7%.

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