In April, the Boston, MA market saw a decline year-over-year in new home closings, and there were signals of worsening market conditions as the percentage fall was steeper than March 2016. Closings fell 70.7% from a year earlier to 34. This came after a 50.9% fall year-over-year in March.
A total of 1,022 new homes were sold during the 12 months that ended in April, down from 1,104 for the year that ended in March.
Out of all housing closings, new home closings represented 0.7%. This is down from the 2.6% of closings a year earlier. Following a year-over-year increase in March, closings of new and existing homes also rose year-over-year in April.
Pricing and Mortgage Trends
In April, the average per-unit price of new homes slid by 20.6% year-over-year to $479,313. This drop is larger than the 2.5% decline in March from a year earlier.
The average mortgage size on newly sold homes saw a drop year-over-year in contrast to new home prices. It dropped to $323,186 in April, a 26.7% drop. Average mortgage size slid 18.2% in March 2016 from a year earlier.
Other Market Trends
As a percentage of new home closings, attached unit closings have climbed from last year while single-family home closings have dropped. Attached unit closings grew from 42.2% of all closings in April 2015 to 82.4% of closings in April 2016. Conversely, the share belonging to single-family homes dropped to 17.6% of closings from 57.8% of closings.
The average unit size of newly sold homes declined 28.0% year-over-year to 1,719 square feet in April 2016. A fall was also seen in March 2016 when the average size of new homes sold slid 23.5% to 1,896 square feet. The average size of newly sold homes moved from 2,480 square feet in March 2015 to 1,896 square feet in March 2016.
Foreclosures and real estate owned (REO) closings continued to drop from a year earlier in April, but did not look to be a burden on the market. Combined, foreclosures plus REO closings accounted for 14.0% of existing home closings, below 16.5% a year earlier. The percentage of existing home closings involving foreclosures fell to 6.9% in April from 9.3% a year earlier and REO closings moved from 7.3% of existing home closings in April 2015 to 7.1% in April 2016.