In September, the Savannah, GA market saw a decline year-over-year in new home closings, and there were suggestions of weakening market conditions with a percentage decline steeper than that of August 2015. Closings dropped 47.2% from a year earlier to 38. In comparison, new home closings in the same month last year saw a 20.3% drop year-over-year in August.
A total of 590 new homes were sold during the 12 months that ended in September, down from 624 for the year that ended in August.
As a percentage of overall housing closings, new home closings represented 6.4%. This is down from the a year earlier when new home closings accounted for 15.0% of total closings. For new and existing homes, closings jumped year-over-year in September after also increasing in August year-over-year.
Pricing and Mortgage Trends
The average price of newly sold homes dropped 4.5% year-over-year in September to $221,550 per unit. This drop is larger than the 3.0% decline in August from a year earlier.
For newly sold homes, the average mortgage size saw a fall year-over-year in contrast to new home prices. In September 2015, there was a 4.6% fall in the average mortgage size on new homes to $209,806. In August 2015, average mortgage size on newly sold homes saw a 2.1% boost year-over-year from a year earlier.
Other Market Trends
Single-family homes accounted for a greater percentage of new home closings than last year. The share of new home closings belonging to single-family homes jumped from 98.6% in September 2014 to all of closings in September 2015. At the same time, the share of new home closings belonging to attached units dropped to no part of closings from 1.4% of closings.
The average unit size of newly sold homes rose 73.0% year-over-year to 4,089 square feet in September 2015. The average size of newly sold homes moved from 2,275 square feet in August 2014 to 2,581 square feet in August 2015. This hike was opposite the price decline, a pattern also seen in August 2015 when the average size of newly sold homes increased 13.5% to 2,581 square feet.
Foreclosures and real estate owned (REO) closings continued to drop from a year earlier in September, but did not appear to be dragging the market. Out of all existing home closings, foreclosures combined with REO closings accounted for 21.5% of closings, below 30.5% a year earlier. The percentage of existing home closings involving foreclosures dropped to 10.3% in September from 14.0% a year earlier while REO closings as a percentage of existing home closings declined to 11.2% from 16.5% a year earlier.