New home closings sank year-over-year in April in the Seattle, WA market, and the percentage fall worsened from March 2016, indicating the market may be weakening. New home closings saw a fall of 19.6% from the year earlier to 595. This was after the housing market saw a 8.7% decline year-over-year in March.
A total of 7,385 new homes were sold during the 12 months that ended in April, down from 7,530 for the year that ended in March.
Out of all housing closings, new home closings made up 9.0%. This is down from the 10.5% of closings a year earlier. After rising year-over-year in March, closings of new and existing homes declined year-over-year in April.
Pricing and Mortgage Trends
In April, the average value of new homes saw a 9.4% surge year-over-year as it grew to $583,675 per unit. This lift is smaller than the 15.1% gain in March year-over-year.
The average mortgage size on newly sold homes saw a rise year-over-year along with new home prices. The average mortgage size rose to $453,019 in April, marking a 6.5% boost compared with a year earlier. In March 2016, average mortgage size gained 11.3% from a year earlier.
Other Market Trends
As a share of new home closings, single-family home closings have climbed from last year while the share belonging to attached units has fallen. The share of new home closings belonging to single-family homes grew from 79.7% in April 2015 to 83.7% of closings in April 2016. Conversely, the share of new home closings belonging to attached units fell to 16.3% of closings from 20.3% of closings.
There was a 2.8% decline year-over-year in the average unit size of newly sold homes to 2,518 square feet in April 2016. In March, the average size of new homes sold went from 2,588 square feet a year earlier to 2,675 square feet.
Foreclosures and real estate owned (REO) closings continued to decline from a year earlier in April, but did not appear to be dragging the market. Together, foreclosures plus REO closings accounted for 15.2% of existing home closings, down from 16.9% a year earlier. The percentage of existing home closings involving foreclosures went from 6.6% in April 2015 to 7.5% in April 2016 and REO closings as a percentage of existing home closings slid to 7.6% from 10.2% a year earlier.