After a period of sharp increases, home price gains began to slow last fall. The trend – which has continued ever since – is an indication of a more normal housing market, according to David M. Blitzer, chairman of the index committee at S&P Dow Jones Indices. The latest S&P / Case-Shiller U.S. National Home Price Index found that, though up from one year ago, home prices are increasing at an ever-slower pace. In fact, all of the cities covered by the index showed lower annual rates for the first time since February 2008. According to Blitzer, the trend – along with other positive housing indicators, such as housing starts, existing-home sales, and builders’ sentiment – is an indication that the housing market is normalizing. And, in addition to contributing to a more balanced market, slower price gains, combined with mortgage rates still hovering near historic lows, mean more opportunities for buyers this fall. The S&P Case-Shiller Home Price Indices are considered the leading measure of U.S. home prices. More here.