Home prices in the Portland area and major U.S. metro areas climbed in March, though at a rate that’s slowed from recent months. Prices rose about .9 percent in March across the 20 cities included in the Standard & Poor’s/Case-Shiller home price index released Tuesday. Compared with a year ago, prices were up 12.4 percent. In the Portland area, prices were up 1.3 percent in March and have increased by 11.8 percent from a year earlier. Portland was one of 13 cities in the index where prices are rising at a slower year-over-year rate than they were in March 2013, during the early part of the recovery.