New home closings in the Anchorage, AK market sank year-over-year in December, but compared with November 2015, the percentage fall was less steep, hinting the market may be strengthening. New home closings saw a drop of 40.8% from the year earlier to 29. This was after the housing market saw a 53.3% decline year-over-year in November.

A total of 412 new homes were sold during the 12 months that ended in December, down from 432 for the year that ended in November.

New home closings represented 4.6% of overall housing closings. This is a decline 7.6% of closings a year earlier. Closings of new and existing homes fell year-over-year in December after also falling in November year-over-year.

Pricing and Mortgage Trends

In December, the average price for new home closings was $325,394, a 20.7% decline from last year. This fall is a drop off from the 24.6% decline in November from a year earlier.

Average mortgage size on new homes sank year-over-year in contrast to new home prices. In December 2015, average mortgage size on new homes sold was $286,428, down 21.7% from a year earlier. In November 2015, average mortgage size on newly sold homes saw a 25.1% drop from a year earlier.

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 rose from 65.3% in December 2014 to 89.7% of closings in December 2015. Meanwhile, attached units as a percentage of all new home closings dropped to 10.3% of closings from 34.7% of closings.

The average unit size of newly sold homes went from 2,436 square feet in December 2014 to 2,418 square feet in December 2015. In November, the average size of new homes sold went from 2,217 square feet a year earlier to 2,235 square feet.

Foreclosures and real estate owned (REO) closings continued to fall from a year earlier in December, but did not look to be a burden on the market. Combined, foreclosures plus REO closings made up 9.2% of existing home closings, below 13.7% a year earlier. The percentage of existing home closings involving foreclosures declined to 3.4% in December from 6.2% a year earlier while REO closings as a percentage of existing home closings slid to 5.9% from 7.5% a year earlier.

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