The Birmingham, AL market saw a drop in new home closings year-over-year in January, and the decline was by a larger percentage than the December 2015. New home closings moved from 56 a year earlier to 5 after the figure moved from 132 in December 2014 to 41 in December 2015.

A total of 635 new homes were sold during the 12 months that ended in January, down from 686 for the year that ended in December.

Last year, 56 of 1,230 total closings were new homes, and this percentage saw a decline as new home closings this year made up 5 of the 1,089 total closings. Following a year-over-year decline in December, closings of new and existing homes also sank year-over-year in January.

Pricing and Mortgage Trends

The average value of newly sold homes in January 2016 was $153,633, down from last year's $283,991. This was on the heels of a 18.8% fall in December from a year earlier.

Average mortgage size on new homes fell from $237,564 to $176,002. In December 2015, average mortgage size slid 11.7% from a year earlier.

Other Market Trends

There was no change in the composition of the new home market with regard to the types of properties sold in January 2016.

The average unit size of newly sold homes rose from 2,420 square feet a year earlier to 2,802 square feet.

Foreclosures and real estate owned (REO) closings decreased in January from a year earlier, but stayed a drag on the market. Out of all existing home closings, foreclosures combined with REO closings accounted for 35.7% of closings, below 41.7% a year earlier. The percentage of existing home closings involving foreclosures sank to 20.4% in January from 23.7% a year earlier while REO closings as a percentage of existing home closings dropped to 15.3% from 18.1% a year earlier.

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