Hey, anybody hear that we're in a housing boom?

Yeah, I thought so.

One of the 10 largest homebuilders in the country, Hovnanian Enterprises (NYSE:HOV), reported sound second-quarter results. Revenue grew 32% for the quarter, and net income grew 51% with better margins.

Although new orders dipped a bit in the quarter, Hovnanian delivered about 12% more homes in the quarter than during the year-ago period, and the average selling prices of those homes climbed by about 18%. Backlog also grew strongly, whether measured in numbers of homes (35.7%) or dollar value (61%). Stripping out unconsolidated joint-venture contributions, both figures were still positive, with homes increasing 12.5% and dollar value growing by almost 18%.

Also important, Hovnanian continues to report excellent efficiency numbers. The annualized return on equity for the quarter exceeded 30%, and the annualized return on assets is solidly in the double digits.

Of course, you can't talk about a homebuilder without talking about the housing bubble. Honestly, I'd rather go through a Novocain-free root canal than talk about whether there is, or isn't, a housing bubble in the country. So I'll say two things. First, if you really want to hear about the housing market, watch the Fox News financial programs on Saturday -- that seems to be the only thing the people on those shows want to talk about. Second, remember this: Whenever someone tells you "It's different this time," it's probably not different, and that person is probably trying to sell you something you don't really want.

Though Hovnanian carries a fair bit of debt, it's not out of line with similar builders. What's more, the company generates solid margins and returns on its capital. Like other homebuilders, Hovnanian trades at a valuation that suggests we're at or near peak cycle times. I'm not inclined to disagree, but there's no doubt that business today is still quite strong.

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Fool contributor Stephen Simpson has no financial interest in any stocks mentioned (that means he's neither long nor short the shares).