In the Olympia, WA market, new home closings climbed year-over-year in December, snapping back from a drop in November 2015. New home closings saw a climb of 9.1% from the year earlier to 48. This came after a 15.8% fall year-over-year in November.
A total of 648 new homes were sold during the 12 months that ended in December, up from 644 for the year that ended in November.
Out of all housing closings, new home closings represented 12.8%. This is an increase on a percentage basis, as new home closings were 11.0% of total closings a year ago. Following a year-over-year decline in November, closings of new and existing homes also declined year-over-year in December.
Pricing and Mortgage Trends
For newly sold homes, the average price increased 8.6% year-over-year in December to $336,736 per unit. This gain is smaller than the 18.9% lift in November year-over-year.
The average mortgage size on new homes moved north year-over-year along with new home prices. In December 2015, the average mortgage size was $289,513, up 5.4% from a year earlier. Average mortgage size grew 5.0% in November 2015 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 gained from 93.2% in December 2014 to 97.9% of closings in December 2015. Meanwhile, attached units as a percentage of all new home closings sank to 2.1% of closings from 6.8% of closings.
There was a 5.2% decline year-over-year in the average unit size of newly sold homes to 2,220 square feet in December 2015. This fall was opposite the price rise, a pattern also seen in November 2015 when the average size of newly sold homes fell 5.6% to 2,028 square feet. In November, the average size of new homes sold went from 2,148 square feet a year earlier to 2,028 square feet.
Foreclosures and real estate owned (REO) closings fell in December from a year earlier, but remained a drag on the market. Out of all existing home closings, foreclosures combined with REO closings represented 25.1% of closings, below 34.8% a year earlier. The percentage of existing home closings involving foreclosures sank to 11.6% in December from 18.0% a year earlier while REO closings as a percentage of existing home closings declined to 13.5% from 16.9% a year earlier.