Closings of new homes fell year-over-year in March in the Grand Rapids, MI market, and the decline was by a larger percentage than the February 2016. New home closings moved from 43 a year earlier to 9 after the figure moved from 32 in February 2015 to 10 in February 2016.

A total of 335 new homes were sold during the 12 months that ended in March, down from 369 for the year that ended in February.

New home closings represented 9 out of the 1,060 total closings, which is a smaller percentage than the 43 of 1,095 total closings a year earlier. After rising year-over-year in February, closings of new and existing homes dropped year-over-year in March.

Pricing and Mortgage Trends

The average new home price was $211,956, down from $218,890 a year earlier. This was on the heels of a 17.4% gain in February year-over-year.

Average mortgage size on new homes went from $199,196 a year earlier to $206,454. Average mortgage size on new homes went from $205,235 in February 2015 to $236,453 in February 2016.

Other Market Trends

As a share of new home closings, single-family home closings have risen from last year while the share belonging to attached units has fallen.

The average unit size of newly sold homes fell from 1,763 square feet a year earlier to 1,522 square feet.

Foreclosures and real estate owned (REO) closings continued to decline from a year earlier in March, but did not look to be a burden on the market. Together, foreclosures plus REO closings made up 17.4% of existing home closings, down from 22.3% a year earlier. The percentage of existing home closings involving foreclosures sank to 6.4% in March from 10.5% a year earlier and REO closings moved from 11.9% of existing home closings in March 2015 to 11.0% in March 2016.

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