In the Savannah, GA market in May, closings of new homes sank year-over-year, but the percentage decline, which was less steep than in April 2016, seemed to be signaling market improvement. Closings declined 39.2% from a year earlier to 62. This came on the heels of a 50.5% fall year-over-year in April.

A total of 976 new homes were sold during the 12 months that ended in May, down from 1,016 for the year that ended in April.

As a percentage of overall housing closings, new home closings accounted for 8.5%. This is a fall 14.4% of closings a year earlier. After dropping in April from a year earlier, closings of new and existing homes rose year-over-year in May.

Pricing and Mortgage Trends

The average price of new homes was $240,655 per unit in May, up 5.0%from a year earlier. This surge compares to a 7.1% fall in April from a year earlier.

The average mortgage size on new homes moved north year-over-year along with new home prices. The average mortgage size saw a 11.7% gain year-over-year to $229,301 in May. In April 2016, average mortgage size fell 5.3% from a year earlier.

Other Market Trends

Closings of attached units, as a percentage of new home closings, have climbed from last year while closings of single-family homes have dipped. The share of new home closings belonging to attached units jumped from 2.9% of closings in May 2015 to 8.1% of closings in May 2016. At the same time, the share belonging to single-family homes fell to 91.9% of closings from 97.1% of closings.

For all new homes sold, the average unit size declined 8.2% year-over-year to 2,259 square feet in May 2016. In April, the average size of new homes sold went from 2,352 square feet a year earlier to 1,337 square feet.

Foreclosures and real estate owned (REO) closings continued to fall from a year earlier in May, but did not appear to be dragging the market. Foreclosures and REO closings, taken together, represented 19.6% of existing closings, lower than 24.4% a year earlier. The percentage of existing home closings involving foreclosures sank to 6.6% in May from 9.1% a year earlier while REO closings as a percentage of existing home closings declined to 13.0% from 15.3% a year earlier.

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