According to Nationwide, Reading was top of the list, with prices soaring by 13% from 2015 to 2016.
This was followed by Oxford, with an increase of 12%. Finishing off the top five is Coventry, Brighton and Bristol, all recording growth of 10%.
Wesley Davidson, joint director of independent mortgage broker Fox Davidson, comments: “The majority of growth in the housing market comes from regional cities where prices are rising off a low base as household confidence improves and home owners use record low mortgage rates to access the market.
“The increase is also a result of more homeowners looking to move to cities like Bristol from London where the property market is ‘overheating’.”
Shares of Berkeley Group, the London-focused housebuilder has seen shares fall this year to 15pc following a slowdown in the central London market.
Redrow, another of the UK’s big housebuilders, confirmed that some of the heat has come off the capital’s prime property market.
Bristol is an attractive prospect for many. It has been voted the best place to live in the UK, the happiest and the coolest.
The city has an average base salary of £32,000, but an average house price just shy of £300,000, according to the index of average house prices, as of June 29, this year.
Although there are more jobs in London and employees are generally satisfied, it is a competitive place to work and runs a high cost of living, whereas in Bristol people are finding their money is going further, contributing to a better quality of life.
Sarah Fox-Clinch, director at Fox Davidson, says changes in the buy to let market has also lured first-time buyers to the city.
She said: “For several years buy-to-let investors have been enticed by high tenant demand and attractive returns, but as their window of opportunity starts to close due to tax changes in the market it already appears to be opening wider for first-time buyers.”