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Foreclosure starts leap in August (CHARTS)

Homes in foreclosure process remains near historic high

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Foreclosure starts jumped 20 percent from July to August, with first-time foreclosure starts hitting a 2011 high, data aggregator Lending Processing Services Inc. reports.The 247,957 foreclosure starts LPS tracked nationwide in August represented a 12.2 percent decline from a year ago, but the number of homes in the foreclosure process remained near historic highs. There were an estimated 2.15 million homes in the foreclosure process at the end of August, down slightly from 2.2 million in January. The owners of those homes were delinquent on their mortgages by an average of 611 days.A record number of loans shifted from foreclosure back into delinquent status, suggesting that loan servicers continue to review processes in the wake of the robo signing controversy, and that loss mitigation activity continues, LPS said.Foreclosure sales were down 36 percent nationwide from their September 2010 peaks, LPS said. In the 18 states where foreclosure sales dropped even more sharply, only five w...