In the Bakersfield, CA market in December, new home closings dropped year-over-year, and the market seemed to be weakening with a percentage decline steeper than in November 2015. New home closings saw a 16.1% decline from a year earlier to 146. The came on the heels of a move from 135 in November 2014 to 174 in November 2015.

A total of 1,766 new homes were sold during the 12 months that ended in December, down from 1,794 for the year that ended in November.

As a percentage of overall housing closings, new home closings accounted for 13.6%. This is down from the 15.9% of closings a year earlier. Following a year-over-year decline in November, closings of new and existing homes also sank year-over-year in December.

Pricing and Mortgage Trends

In December, there was a 5.4% drop year-over-year in the average per-unit price of newly sold homes, settling at $289,740. This fall compares to a 11.7% bump in November year-over-year.

Average mortgage size on new homes fell year-over-year in contrast to new home prices. In December 2015, average mortgage size on new homes sold was $254,666, down 4.1% from a year earlier. Average mortgage size jumped 8.3% in November 2015 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 December 2015. Single-family home closings have made up all of new home closings while attached unit closings have represented no part of closings.

There was a 3.7% surge year-over-year in the average unit size of newly sold homes to 2,359 square feet in December 2015. The average size of newly sold homes moved from 2,159 square feet in November 2014 to 2,513 square feet in November 2015.

Foreclosures and real estate owned (REO) closings continued to decline from a year earlier in December, but did not appear to be dragging the market. Combined, foreclosures plus REO closings accounted for 21.2% of existing home closings, below 29.0% a year earlier. The percentage of existing home closings involving foreclosures sank to 10.4% in December from 14.7% a year earlier while REO closings as a percentage of existing home closings slid to 10.8% from 14.3% a year earlier.

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