National home price gains slowed in the first quarter after a big push late last year but remained at a "boil" in some markets, according to real estate website Zillow.
Zillow's first-quarter home value index was up 0.5% from the fourth quarter of last year, it says.
That was compared with the 2.1% jump in the fourth quarter from the third, Zillow says, marking the smallest quarter-to-quarter gain since the home price recovery began.
The slower rate is "indicative of a market that is slowly finding its natural level," says Stan Humphries, Zillow chief economist.
Home prices have rebounded more strongly in the past year than many expected, and the sometimes dramatic run-ups in value were never expected to be sustainable, he says.
A home value index kept by John Burns Real Estate Consulting shows national prices up 5.7% in the first quarter of 2013 over the first quarter of 2012.