In January, there was a drop year-over-year in new home closings in the Port St. Lucie, FL market, and the percentage decline, which was steeper than December 2015, gave hints that the market may be worsening. New home closings saw a drop of 17.9% from the year earlier to 32. This was after the housing market saw a 12.0% decline year-over-year in December.
A total of 822 new homes were sold during the 12 months that ended in January, down from 829 for the year that ended in December.
New home closings made up 3.5% of overall closings, unchanged from a year earlier. Closings of new and existing homes fell year-over-year in January after also falling in December year-over-year.
Pricing and Mortgage Trends
In January, the average price of newly sold homes climbed year-over-year to $402,320 per unit, a 23.5% boost. This rise is higher than the 6.6% gain in December year-over-year.
There was a bump year-over-year in the average mortgage size on new homes along with new home prices. Average mortgage size gained 10.8% to $274,216 in January from a year earlier. Average mortgage size sank 5.8% in December 2015 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 grew from 94.9% in January 2015 to 96.9% of closings in January 2016. Conversely, the share of new home closings belonging to attached units fell to 3.1% of closings from 5.1% of closings.
For all new homes sold, the average unit size declined 4.3% year-over-year to 2,443 square feet in January 2016. In December, the average size of new homes sold went from 2,385 square feet a year earlier to 2,507 square feet.
Foreclosures and real estate owned (REO) closings continued to fall from a year earlier in January, but did not look to be a burden on the market. Out of all existing home closings, foreclosures combined with REO closings made up 24.3% of closings, below 46.1% a year earlier. The percentage of existing home closings involving foreclosures sank to 12.9% in January from 24.2% a year earlier while REO closings as a percentage of existing home closings dropped to 11.5% from 21.9% a year earlier.