Calgary’s real estate market continued a spring resurgence in April as sales improved across all sectors.

Job growth and reduced single-family inventory helped bring some stability to the local market. CREB's April report shows sales of single-family homes rose 6 per cent from a year ago, to 1,204 units. Year-to-date sales of detached homes are up 14.6 per cent, at 3,781 units.

Apartment sales rose 5 per cent, to 287 units, last month, and are up almost 18 per cent this year.  

More jobs means less uncertainty for people who are sitting on the fence. There also tends to be fewer people who need to sell when employment improves, and that can prevent inventory gains and further price reductions in the market.

The average sale price of a detached home last month was 4 per cent higher than a year ago, at $562,633. The median price also rose 4 per cent, to $503,250.

CREB said steady sales growth has helped reduce housing supply in the city from elevated levels of the past two years. The number of detached homes on the market is down about 20 per cent from a year ago, it said.

While activity continues to vary by location and product type, more balanced conditions will help to support overall price stability.

Oversupply in the condo apartment category remains a concern as new listings outpace sales growth, keeping prices suppressed.

The median price for apartments last month declined 4.1 per cent from April 2016, to $267,000. The average price was unchanged at $303,000, though prices are down almost 12 per cent from the peak of 2014.

Improvements in the employment situation were necessary to prevent further declines in the housing sector.

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Calgary’s housing market showing signs of stability, but the road to a full recovery will take time.

When we talk about recovery, we have to differentiate the marketplace conditions because there are two segments facing different prospects. There’s the detached market that seems to be improving, and then there’s the apartment segment, which continues to struggle.

Sales in the detached sector have improved from low levels over the past two years, but at the same time fewer listings have been coming onto the market reducing inventory and supporting some price stability.

In March 2017, detached resales increased by 17 per cent compared with the same period last year, and inventory declined by 25 per cent. Prices have remained relatively stable as a result.

With apartments, the challenge is increasing supply in the new home sector weighing on the market. There is a large amount of new apartments under construction, and it is difficult for supply to quickly adjust to the current demand environment as builders rarely halt construction midway through a project.

Still, apartment sales increased, as did the attached segment in the first three months of the year compared with the same period in 2016.

Employment growth “is critical” to the real estate market. Jobs increase migration and that helps drive housing growth.

Job growth has gone on a small run of late. And oil prices have stabilized, which is equally important. These are good signs for the resale housing market.

The city may face an entirely new normal of slower growth.

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