When did the housing bubble start? Paper gives two start dates: 2002 and 1995

When did the housing bubble start?  There are two different theories put out by academia.  Only one is right.  Via BLS:
In the demand data, the bubble’s starting point is much less apparent than its endpoint. The expansionary period started in 1991, but when this growth became a bubble is debatable. Many different start dates have been discussed, but years from the late 1990s and early 2000s are the most often suggested. Some people, including Thomas Lawler, an independent analyst who worked for Fannie Mae from 1984 to 2006, contend the bubble started in 2002. Lawler claims that, as the tech-stock bubble came to an end in 2000, investors focused on real estate as an alternative investment vehicle. The low interest rates set by the Federal Reserve over the following few years provided further incentive for home buying. He further asserts that relaxed lending standards helped demand continue when prices reached levels that most people could not otherwise have afforded.
I made this same argument in a previous post.  Housing prices ran up significantly from 1991 - 2006.  However, mortgage rates were falling so housing prices would naturally rise as affordability remained constant.  When rates bottomed in about 2002-2003, and housing prices kept rising, that is when the bubble started. You cannot look at housing prices in the absence of their interest rate environment.

Housing prices comes from Shiller and mortgage rates from Freddie Mac.  The Red circle is when we identified the housing prices started forming a bubble. 
See a correlation? 

Others contend the bubble began much earlier. For example, Dean Baker, codirector of the Center for Economic and Policy Research, argues the bubble started in 1997. Baker holds that the runup in demand and prices for housing was in large part due to the increased trade deficit and financial market deregulation in the 1990s. Robert Shiller has pointed out that prices, as measured by the Case–Shiller 10-city home price index, rose from 1995 to 2006, and he therefore refers to this as the boom period.


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