In March, closings of new homes in the Los Angeles, CA market rose year-over-year, but with a less pronounced percentage rise than February 2016, there are signals of market stabilization. New home closings saw a 14.3% boost from a year earlier to 689. This followed a 22.9% rise year-over-year in February.
A total of 6,927 new homes were sold during the 12 months that ended in March, up from 6,841 for the year that ended in February.
As a percentage of overall housing closings, new home closings made up 6.6% of overall housing closings. They accounted for 5.8% of closings a year earlier. After increasing in February from a year earlier, closings of new and existing homes remained level in March.
Pricing and Mortgage Trends
Average price of newly sold homes had a 3.6% surge year-over-year to $874,918 per unit in March. This gain is smaller than the 9.8% rise in February year-over-year.
For newly sold homes, the average mortgage size jumped year-over-year along with new home prices. Average mortgage size climbed 11.5% to $613,018 in March from a year earlier. In February 2016, average mortgage size grew 1.1% from a year earlier.
Other Market Trends
Closings of attached units, as a percentage of new home closings, have grown from last year while closings of single-family homes have fallen. Attached unit closings increased from 38.0% of all closings in March 2015 to 41.9% of closings in March 2016. At the same time, the share belonging to single-family homes dropped to 58.1% of closings from 62.0% of closings.
The average unit size of newly sold homes increased 6.5% year-over-year to 2,488 square feet in March 2016. In February, the average size of new homes sold went from 2,356 square feet a year earlier to 2,855 square feet. An increase was also seen in February 2016 when the average size of new homes sold jumped 21.2% to 2,855 square feet.
Foreclosures and real estate owned (REO) closings continued to decline from a year earlier in March, but did not appear to be dragging the market. Foreclosures and REO closings, taken together, made up 11.6% of existing closings, lower than 13.6% a year earlier. The percentage of existing home closings involving foreclosures slid to 5.2% in March from 6.3% a year earlier and REO closings moved from 7.4% of existing home closings in March 2015 to 6.4% in March 2016.