Driven by discounting and concessions, as home builders are more “motivated to sell homes in their construction pipeline,” versus existing-home owners that might try to hold out for last year’s prices, with varying results, mortgage loan application volume for new homes across the U.S. ticked up 4 percent last month and was 1.2 percent higher than at the same time last year, but the annualized pace of sales actually slipped 5 percent from January, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association, with 11 percent more new homes on the market than at the same time last year.

And in fact, while the average loan size for new homes across the U.S. inched up 1 percent from January to February, it was down 6 percent on a year-over-year basis and 7 percent below last year’s peak, drops (i.e., discounting and concessions) that shouldn’t catch any plugged-in readers, other than the most obstinate, by surprise.

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