The Virginia Beach, VA market saw a drop in new home closings year-over-year in March, and there were signals the market may be weakening with a percentage drop steeper than February 2016. Closings slid 58.5% from a year earlier to 76. In comparison, new home closings in the same month last year saw a 34.8% drop year-over-year in February.

A total of 1,727 new homes were sold during the 12 months that ended in March, down from 1,834 for the year that ended in February.

Out of all housing closings, new home closings made up 3.3%. This is a fall 7.3% of closings a year earlier. After rising year-over-year in February, closings of new and existing homes declined year-over-year in March.

Pricing and Mortgage Trends

For newly sold homes, the average price declined 2.4% year-over-year in March to $337,848 per unit. This decline compares to a 12.9% bump in February year-over-year.

The average mortgage size on new homes moved north year-over-year in contrast to new home prices. In March 2016, there was a 5.3% surge in the average mortgage size, reaching $313,804. Average mortgage size rose 10.4% in February 2016 from a year earlier.

Other Market Trends

Single-family homes accounted for a greater percentage of new home closings than last year. Single-family home closings climbed from 71.0% of new closings in March 2015 to 85.5% of closings in March 2016. At the same time, the share of new home closings belonging to attached units slid to 14.5% of closings from 29.0% of closings.

The average unit size of newly sold homes declined 13.8% year-over-year to 1,940 square feet in March 2016. In February, the average size of new homes sold went from 2,269 square feet a year earlier to 1,981 square feet.

Foreclosures and real estate owned (REO) closings fell in March from a year earlier, but remained a burden on the market. Together, foreclosures plus REO closings represented 29.8% of existing home closings, down from 34.1% a year earlier. The percentage of existing home closings involving foreclosures fell to 13.8% in March from 16.9% a year earlier while REO closings as a percentage of existing home closings slid to 16.0% from 17.2% a year earlier.

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