Closings of new homes sank year-over-year in August in the Allentown, PA market, but there were suggestions of market improvement with a percentage fall less steep than in July 2015. New home closings saw a 13.9% drop from a year earlier to 68. In comparison, new home closings in the same month last year saw a 28.8% decline year-over-year in July.

A total of 649 new homes were sold during the 12 months that ended in August, down from 660 for the year that ended in July.

New home closings made up 6.0% of overall housing closings. This is a fall 7.8% of closings a year earlier. For new and existing homes, closings rose year-over-year in August after also increasing in July year-over-year.

Pricing and Mortgage Trends

The average price of new homes climbed year-over-year 11.0% in August to $373,258 per unit. This boost is higher than the 3.8% gain in July year-over-year.

The average mortgage size on new homes moved north year-over-year along with new home prices. In August 2015, the average mortgage size was $274,546, a 7.4% bump from a year earlier. In July 2015, average mortgage size on newly sold homes saw a 12.2% gain 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. Single-family home closings gained from 51.9% of new closings in August 2014 to 67.6% of closings in August 2015. Conversely, the share of new home closings belonging to attached units sank to 32.4% of closings from 48.1% of closings.

For all new homes sold, the average unit size slid 19.1% year-over-year to 1,990 square feet in August 2015. For newly sold homes, an average size drop contrasting with an average price lift was also seen in July 2015 when the average size of newly sold homes declined 17.7% to 2,006 square feet. The average size of newly sold homes moved from 2,437 square feet in July 2014 to 2,006 square feet in July 2015.

Foreclosures and real estate owned (REO) closings continued to drop from a year earlier in August, but did not look to be a burden on the market. Out of all existing home closings, foreclosures combined with REO closings accounted for 22.5% of closings, below 23.1% a year earlier. The percentage of existing home closings involving foreclosures went from 12.4% in August 2014 to 12.9% in August 2015 and REO closings as a percentage of existing home closings fell to 9.7% from 10.7% a year earlier.

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