Closings of new homes dropped year-over-year in January in the Durham, NC market, a downhill move after a gain in December 2015. New home closings saw a 21.8% drop from a year earlier to 86. This was after the housing market saw a 28.8% boost year-over-year in December.

A total of 1,736 new homes were sold during the 12 months that ended in January, down from 1,760 for the year that ended in December.

Out of all housing closings, new home closings represented 17.0%. This is down from the a year earlier when new home closings made up 20.6% of total closings. Following a year-over-year increase in December, closings of new and existing homes dropped year-over-year in January.

Pricing and Mortgage Trends

The average price of new homes sank by 7.7% year-over-year to $317,438 per unit in January. This fall compares to a 2.0% gain in December year-over-year.

For newly sold homes, the average mortgage size saw a drop year-over-year in contrast to new home prices. It fell 2.5% in January from a year earlier, reaching $259,119. In December 2015, average mortgage size on newly sold homes saw a 4.5% bump year-over-year 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. The share of new home closings belonging to attached units jumped from 20.9% of closings in January 2015 to 31.4% of closings in January 2016. At the same time, the share belonging to single-family homes declined to 68.6% of closings from 79.1% of closings.

The average unit size of newly sold homes gained 32.2% year-over-year to 3,195 square feet in January 2016. In December, the average size of new homes sold went from 2,370 square feet a year earlier to 2,643 square feet.

Foreclosures and real estate owned (REO) closings continued to drop from a year earlier in January, but did not appear to be dragging the market. Combined, foreclosures plus REO closings represented 15.9% of existing home closings, below 17.5% a year earlier. The percentage of existing home closings involving foreclosures went from 8.5% in January 2015 to 8.8% in January 2016 and REO closings as a percentage of existing home closings slid to 7.1% from 9.0% a year earlier.

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