In March, there was a decline year-over-year in new home closings in the Columbus, GA market, and the market seemed to be worsening in light of the percentage fall steeper than February 2016. Closings fell 37.5% from a year earlier to 15. This came after a 10.5% drop year-over-year in February.

A total of 225 new homes were sold during the 12 months that ended in March, down from 234 for the year that ended in February.

As a percentage of overall housing closings, new home closings accounted for 4.6%. This is down from the a year earlier when new home closings accounted for 7.1% of total closings. Following a year-over-year increase in February, closings of new and existing homes dropped year-over-year in March.

Pricing and Mortgage Trends

In March, the average price of newly sold homes increased year-over-year to $271,840 per unit, a 24.5% bump. This rise compares to a 4.1% decline in February from a year earlier.

The average mortgage size on newly sold homes saw a surge year-over-year along with new home prices. It jumped 13.6% in March from a year earlier to $249,762. It went from $230,920 to $232,671 from February 2015 to February 2016.

Other Market Trends

There was no change in the composition of the new home market with regard to the types of properties sold in March 2016. Single-family home closings have made up all of new home closings while attached unit closings have represented no part of closings.

There was a 64.2% drop year-over-year in the average unit size of newly sold homes to 896 square feet in March 2016. The average size of newly sold homes moved from 2,564 square feet in February 2015 to 1,389 square feet in February 2016.

Foreclosures and real estate owned (REO) closings decreased in March from a year earlier, but remained a burden on the market. Foreclosures and REO closings, taken together, accounted for 42.3% of existing closings, lower than 44.6% a year earlier. The percentage of existing home closings involving foreclosures rose to 25.6% in March from 21.2% a year earlier while REO closings as a percentage of existing home closings slid to 16.7% from 23.4% a year earlier.

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