Closings of new homes in the Washington, DC market declined year-over-year in August, and the percentage drop, which was steeper than July 2015, gave suggestions that the market may be worsening. Closings declined 21.4% from a year earlier to 797. This was after the housing market saw a 11.4% drop year-over-year in July.

A total of 10,239 new homes were sold during the 12 months that ended in August, down from 10,456 for the year that ended in July.

New home closings accounted for 10.4% of overall housing closings. A year ago, 11.4% of total closings were new home closings. Following a year-over-year rise in July, closings of new and existing homes sank year-over-year in August.

Pricing and Mortgage Trends

The average price of new homes climbed year-over-year in August to $548,373 per unit, a rise of 3.9%. This lift compares to a 8.6% fall in July from a year earlier.

The average mortgage size on newly sold homes increased year-over-year along with the average price of new homes. Average mortgage size jumped 6.9% to $463,828 in August from a year earlier. In July 2015, average mortgage size declined 4.1% from a year earlier.

Other Market Trends

Single-family homes accounted for a greater percentage of new home closings than last year. Single-family home closings jumped from 46.8% of new closings in August 2014 to 51.8% of closings in August 2015. Conversely, the share of new home closings belonging to attached units sank to 48.2% of closings from 53.2% of closings.

The average unit size of newly sold homes slid 4.9% year-over-year to 2,981 square feet in August 2015. In July, the average size of new homes sold went from 3,149 square feet a year earlier to 2,735 square feet.

Foreclosures and real estate owned (REO) closings continued to drop from a year earlier in August, but did not look to be a burden on the market. Foreclosures and REO closings, taken together, made up 11.4% of existing closings, lower than 19.0% a year earlier. The percentage of existing home closings involving foreclosures declined to 4.6% in August from 10.0% a year earlier while REO closings as a percentage of existing home closings fell to 6.7% from 9.0% a year earlier.

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