In the Columbus, OH market in January, new home closings sank year-over-year, but the percentage decline, which was less than that of December 2015, gave suggestions that the market may be evening out. Closings slumped 83.8% from a year earlier to 24. This was after the housing market saw a 84.5% decline year-over-year in December.

A total of 1,854 new homes were sold during the 12 months that ended in January, down from 1,978 for the year that ended in December.

Out of all housing closings, new home closings accounted for 1.2%. This is down from the 4.3% of closings a year earlier. Following a year-over-year decline in December, closings of new and existing homes also slid year-over-year in January.

Pricing and Mortgage Trends

In January, the average price of newly sold homes climbed 14.6% year-over-year to $337,353 per unit. This gain is an improvement over the 11.0% surge in December year-over-year.

The average mortgage size on newly sold homes declined year-over-year in contrast to the average price of new homes. In January 2016, average mortgage size declined 7.7% from a year earlier to $230,398. In December 2015, average mortgage size slid 2.8% from a year earlier.

Other Market Trends

The share of new home closings made up by attached units has risen while the share belonging to single-family homes has fallen. The share of new home closings belonging to attached units rose from 18.2% of closings in January 2015 to 41.7% of closings in January 2016. Conversely, the share belonging to single-family homes slid to 58.3% of closings from 81.8% of closings.

There was a 5.8% bump year-over-year in the average unit size of newly sold homes to 2,933 square feet in January 2016. The average size of newly sold homes moved from 2,754 square feet in December 2014 to 2,220 square feet in December 2015.

Foreclosures and real estate owned (REO) closings continued to rise in January from a year earlier and stayed a drag on the market. Together, foreclosures plus REO closings accounted for 25.3% of existing home closings, up from 22.6% a year earlier. The percentage of existing home closings involving foreclosures rose to 13.0% in January from 11.6% a year earlier while REO closings as a percentage of existing home closings jumped to 12.3% from 11.0%.

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