UK house prices
The concentration of houses in Bristol, south west England, is seen from the air Reuters

UK house prices continue to soar above pre-credit crisis highs but Cambridge and Bristol are two regions that are nearly overtaking London as areas that are experiencing the biggest surge in property prices over the last year.

According to research by Hometrack, the average UK house has gained £15,300 (€19,347, $24,504) in the last 12 months, which is equivalent to 55% of average national earnings.

Unsurprisingly, London saw an average rise in property prices of 18.1%. However, Cambridge experienced a 17.9% surge, while the cost to buy a home in Bristol jumped 14.1%.

In contrast, although house prices have risen everywhere across the UK, the lowest house price growth was recorded in Glasgow (4.3%) and Leicester (4.8%).

"Local economies drive their local housing markets. Cities are the focus for employment and business growth, which in turn creates demand for housing. By focusing on cities, we can get a more accurate picture of the health of the housing market," said Richard Donnell, research director, Hometrack.

"Expectations that strong house price growth in the south of England would ripple out across the country were over-done. While house price growth has increased across all cities in the last year, the rate of growth in the majority of cities is below the UK average. There is little evidence of a runaway surge in prices and the rate of growth appears to be moderating.

"On a national level, the overall rate of UK house price growth has been significantly enhanced by London, so we are starting to see a corresponding dip in the rate of growth in the national figures as the rate of growth slows in London."

Hometrack house prices
Cambridge is not far behind London with its house price increases Hometrack