In the Richmond, VA market, closings of new homes sank year-over-year in April, and there were signals of worsening market conditions as the percentage drop was steeper than March 2016. New home closings saw a drop of 38.2% from the year earlier to 118. This came on the heels of a 3.7% drop year-over-year in March.

A total of 2,228 new homes were sold during the 12 months that ended in April, down from 2,301 for the year that ended in March.

New home closings represented 6.6% of overall housing closings. This is a fall 10.4% of closings a year earlier. After remaining steady in March from a year earlier, closings of new and existing homes dropped year-over-year in April.

Pricing and Mortgage Trends

The average price of new homes gained year-over-year 3.2% in April to $345,342 per unit. This hike compares to a 3.9% fall in March from a year earlier.

In April 2016, average mortgage size on newly sold homes moved from $290,843 to $292,969 from April 2015. Average mortgage size slid 1.4% in March 2016 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 gained from 75.9% of new closings in April 2015 to 93.2% of closings in April 2016. At the same time, the share of new home closings belonging to attached units sank to 6.8% of closings from 24.1% of closings.

For all new homes sold, the average unit size increased 3.4% year-over-year to 2,690 square feet in April 2016. In March, the average size of new homes sold went from 2,768 square feet a year earlier to 2,778 square feet.

Foreclosures and real estate owned (REO) closings continued to fall from a year earlier in April, but did not appear to be dragging the market. Combined, foreclosures plus REO closings made up 19.8% of existing home closings, below 25.5% a year earlier. The percentage of existing home closings involving foreclosures sank to 9.8% in April from 12.9% a year earlier while REO closings as a percentage of existing home closings fell to 10.0% from 12.6% a year earlier.

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