In the Lancaster, PA market, closings of new homes sank year-over-year in April, and the percentage decline was steeper than March 2016, suggesting the market may be worsening. New home closings saw a drop of 21.3% from the year earlier to 37. In comparison, new home closings in the same month last year saw a 2.8% drop year-over-year in March.
A total of 621 new homes were sold during the 12 months that ended in April, down from 631 for the year that ended in March.
New home closings accounted for 6.4% of overall housing closings. This is a drop 8.3% of closings a year earlier. Closings of new and existing homes gained year-over-year in April following a drop in March year-over-year.
Pricing and Mortgage Trends
Average price of newly sold homes saw a 7.2% fall year-over-year in April to $336,021 per unit. This fall compares to a 15.6% hike in March year-over-year.
Average mortgage size on new homes declined year-over-year in contrast to new home prices. Average mortgage size declined by 1.5% from a year earlier, settling at $269,312 in April. Average mortgage size increased 20.0% in March 2016 from a year earlier.
Other Market Trends
The percentage of new home closings belonging to single-family homes has risen from last year while the portion of new home closings belonging to attached units has dropped. The share of new home closings belonging to single-family homes increased from 66.0% in April 2015 to 81.1% of closings in April 2016. Meanwhile, attached units as a percentage of all new home closings fell to 18.9% of closings from 34.0% of closings.
Foreclosures and real estate owned (REO) closings continued to drop from a year earlier in April, but did not appear to be dragging the market. Together, foreclosures plus REO closings accounted for 9.7% of existing home closings, down from 12.7% a year earlier. The percentage of existing home closings involving foreclosures rose to 1.7% in April from 0.6% a year earlier while REO closings as a percentage of existing home closings slid to 8.1% from 12.1% a year earlier.