Closings of new homes fell year-over-year in December in the Portland, ME market, sliding after a growth in November 2015. New home closings moved from 6 a year earlier to 4 after the figure moved from 1 in November 2014 to 8 in November 2015.

A total of 71 new homes were sold during the 12 months that ended in December, down from 73 for the year that ended in November.

Last year, 6 of 259 total closings were new homes, and this percentage saw a decline as new home closings this year made up 4 of the 322 total closings. Closings of new and existing homes jumped year-over-year in December after also rising in November year-over-year.

Pricing and Mortgage Trends

The average per-unit price of new homes was $310,451, compared with $620,760 last year. This followed a 11.6% boost in November year-over-year.

The average mortgage size moved to $305,524, down from last year's $509,785. Average mortgage size on new homes went from $280,230 in November 2014 to $265,621 in November 2015.

Other Market Trends

There was no change in the composition of the new home market with regard to the types of properties sold in December 2015.

The average unit size of newly sold homes fell from 1,642 square feet a year earlier to 1,293 square feet.

Foreclosures and real estate owned (REO) closings continued to decline from a year earlier in December, but did not look to be a burden on the market. Together, foreclosures plus REO closings represented 11.3% of existing home closings, down from 17.0% a year earlier. The percentage of existing home closings involving foreclosures slid to 3.8% in December from 5.9% a year earlier while REO closings as a percentage of existing home closings dropped to 7.5% from 11.1% a year earlier.

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