The Deal of Century

It sounded hokey and desperate, like something the mattress stores do. Hovnanian Enterprises, the big New Jersey-based home builder, slashed prices at its developments across the country this past weekend. An LA Times piece on Saturday said a similar blowout sale by Standard Pacific homes had attracted only a trickle of would-be buyers on Friday. That sale, dubbed Mission: Possible, aimed to sell 200 homes over the weekend in Southern California. It seems to have worked. Standard Pacific said on Monday that the number of homes it sold in July and August was up 20%, driven largely by a doubling of sales in California.

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