The president of the Columbus Board of Realtors said Wednesday that home sales figures for April indicated signs of stability, as home sales and average sale prices increased.

The president of the Columbus Board of Realtors said Wednesday that home sales figures for April indicated signs of stability, as home sales and average sale prices increased.

"Home sales in April were still behind those of April 2008, but it's encouraging to see both sales and prices increase," said Columbus Board of Realtors president Gary Parsons.

Inventory levels decreased by 16.1 percent in April compared to April 2008.

"As more homes are sold, and fewer are added to the market, prices will continue to rise," Parsons said. "To see the number of homes on the market decline by nearly 3,000 compared to this time last year, that's a negative number we can smile about."

There were 1,505 homes sold in April, marking another month over month sales increase, but still down 15.6 percent from April 2008. April marked the highest number of homes sold in a month since October 2008.

Home prices continue to inch up, with April's average sale price increasing more than 4 percent over March. However, April's average sale price of $149,285 was still down 6 percent from the same period in 2008.

"Housing affordability is still at record levels, especially in central Ohio, but for those people with homes on the market, an increase in the selling price is welcome news," Parsons said.

Lower-priced homes and foreclosed properties continue to drive sales and put downward pressure on prices.

"Although the average sale price increased in April, it still is, on average, almost $10,000 less than what it was this time last year," Parsons said. "That means buyers have tremendous purchasing power, but also that sellers have to be realistic."