The Washington, DC market saw an increase in closings of new homes in February year-over-year, rising after a drop in January 2016. New home closings saw a 3.9% boost from a year earlier to 636. This came after a 5.1% fall year-over-year in January.

A total of 11,026 new homes were sold during the 12 months that ended in February, up from 11,002 for the year that ended in January.

New home closings, which made up 11.1% of overall closings, were relatively stable compared with a year earlier. For new and existing homes, closings grew year-over-year in February after also increasing in January year-over-year.

Pricing and Mortgage Trends

In February, the average price for new home closings was $521,200, a 2.6% drop from last year. This fall is a drop off from the 3.2% decline in January from a year earlier.

For newly sold homes, the average mortgage size saw a drop year-over-year in contrast to new home prices. In February 2016, average mortgage size on new homes sold was $439,380, down 1.6% from a year earlier. Average mortgage size declined 3.3% in January 2016 from a year earlier.

Other Market Trends

There has been little change in the composition of the market with regard to the types of properties sold. From a year ago, single-family home closings have moved from 49.7% of new home closings to 49.1% of closings while attached units have gone from 50.3% of closings to 50.9% of closings.

The average unit size of newly sold homes slid 15.5% year-over-year to 2,640 square feet in February 2016. A decline was also seen in January 2016 when the average size of new homes sold declined 10.4% to 2,760 square feet. In January, the average size of new homes sold went from 3,080 square feet a year earlier to 2,760 square feet.

Foreclosures and real estate owned (REO) closings continued to fall from a year earlier in February, but did not appear to be dragging the market. Together, foreclosures plus REO closings accounted for 21.7% of existing home closings, down from 23.3% a year earlier. The percentage of existing home closings involving foreclosures fell to 8.8% in February from 10.8% a year earlier and REO closings moved from 12.4% of existing home closings in February 2015 to 12.8% in February 2016.

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