In the Albany, NY market in March, new home closings dropped year-over-year, but the decline was less than the year-over-year decline in February. New home closings moved from 36 a year earlier to 17 after the figure moved from 38 in February 2015 to 13 in February 2016.

A total of 417 new homes were sold during the 12 months that ended in March, down from 436 for the year that ended in February.

As a percentage of overall housing closings, new home closings represented 1.9%. This is down from the a year earlier when new home closings represented 5.1% of total closings. Following a year-over-year increase in February, closings of new and existing homes also increased year-over-year in March.

Pricing and Mortgage Trends

For newly sold homes, the average price slid 1.2% year-over-year in March to $380,751 per unit. This fall is a drop off from the 20.5% decline in February from a year earlier.

For newly sold homes, average mortgage size moved from $310,706 in March 2015 to $313,164 in March 2016. Average mortgage size on new homes went from $286,488 in February 2015 to $244,903 in February 2016.

Other Market Trends

The percentage of new home closings belonging to single-family homes has risen from last year while the portion of new home closings belonging to attached units has dropped. The share of new home closings belonging to single-family homes jumped from 83.3% in March 2015 to 94.1% of closings in March 2016. Conversely, the share of new home closings belonging to attached units fell to 5.9% of closings from 16.7% of closings.

The average unit size of newly sold homes climbed 5.8% year-over-year to 2,418 square feet in March 2016. The average size of newly sold homes moved from 2,232 square feet in February 2015 to 1,612 square feet in February 2016.

Foreclosures and real estate owned (REO) closings continued to rise in March from a year earlier and remained a burden on the market. Together, foreclosures plus REO closings accounted for 27.2% of existing home closings, up from 24.1% a year earlier. The percentage of existing home closings involving foreclosures declined to 12.2% in March from 15.2% a year earlier while REO closings as a percentage of existing home closings gained to 15.0% from 8.9%.

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