In the Portland, OR market, new home closings dropped year-over-year in August, and the percentage drop was steeper than July 2015, giving suggestion the market may be worsening. New home closings saw a fall of 11.4% from the year earlier to 302. In comparison, new home closings in the same month last year saw a 2.6% drop year-over-year in July.

A total of 3,743 new homes were sold during the 12 months that ended in August, down from 3,782 for the year that ended in July.

As a percentage of overall housing closings, new home closings represented 5.9%. This is down from the 7.6% of closings a year earlier. Following a year-over-year increase in July, closings of new and existing homes also jumped year-over-year in August.

Pricing and Mortgage Trends

In August, the average price of newly sold homes climbed 11.4% year-over-year to $403,266 per unit. This gain is an improvement over the 2.3% boost in July year-over-year.

The average mortgage size on newly sold homes grew year-over-year along with the average price of new homes. In August 2015, the average mortgage size was $326,424, a 9.8% gain from a year earlier. In July 2015, average mortgage size on newly sold homes saw a 2.9% boost year-over-year from a year earlier.

Other Market Trends

As a share of new home closings, single-family home closings have climbed from last year while the share belonging to attached units has fallen. Single-family home closings rose from 88.0% of new closings in August 2014 to 90.4% of closings in August 2015. Meanwhile, attached units as a percentage of all new home closings slid to 9.6% of closings from 12.0% of closings.

The average unit size of newly sold homes grew 2.2% year-over-year to 2,338 square feet in August 2015. In July, the average size of new homes sold went from 2,306 square feet a year earlier to 2,162 square feet.

Foreclosures and real estate owned (REO) closings continued to decline from a year earlier in August, but did not look to be a burden on the market. Together, foreclosures plus REO closings made up 11.5% of existing home closings, down from 13.7% a year earlier. The percentage of existing home closings involving foreclosures sank to 5.5% in August from 8.1% a year earlier and REO closings moved from 5.6% of existing home closings in August 2014 to 6.0% in August 2015.

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