In the Fort Walton Beach, FL market in March, closings of new homes declined year-over-year, and the percentage decline was steeper than February 2016, giving suggestion the market may be worsening. New home closings saw a 51.5% fall from a year earlier to 16. This followed a 26.1% drop year-over-year in February.

A total of 266 new homes were sold during the 12 months that ended in March, down from 283 for the year that ended in February.

Out of all housing closings, new home closings made up 3.7%. This is down from the a year earlier when new home closings represented 6.5% of total closings. Following a year-over-year rise in February, closings of new and existing homes sank year-over-year in March.

Pricing and Mortgage Trends

In March, the average value of new homes saw a 6.1% boost year-over-year as it grew to $298,394 per unit. This lift is smaller than the 85.8% rise in February year-over-year.

For newly sold homes, the average mortgage size fell year-over-year in contrast to average price of new homes. It sank 1.4% in March from a year earlier, reaching $263,589. In February 2016, average mortgage size gained 19.0% from a year earlier.

Other Market Trends

Closings of attached units, as a percentage of new home closings, have gained from last year while closings of single-family homes have dipped. Attached unit closings grew from no part of all closings in March 2015 to 18.8% of closings in March 2016. Meanwhile, single-family home closings as a percentage of all new home closings sank to 81.2% of closings from all of closings.

The average unit size of newly sold homes slid 9.5% year-over-year to 2,031 square feet in March 2016. In February, the average size of new homes sold went from 2,250 square feet a year earlier to 2,655 square feet.

Foreclosures and real estate owned (REO) closings continued to drop from a year earlier in March, but did not look to be a burden on the market. Out of all existing home closings, foreclosures combined with REO closings represented 20.6% of closings, below 33.2% a year earlier. The percentage of existing home closings involving foreclosures declined to 7.8% in March from 13.9% a year earlier while REO closings as a percentage of existing home closings slid to 12.8% from 19.3% a year earlier.

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