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Foreclosures back to 2007 levels

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Lenders foreclosed on homes last year at the lowest rate since 2007, but are expected to pick up the pace again this year as they put the "robo signing" scandal behind them.A total of 1.89 million homes were subjected to some type of foreclosure-related filing in 2011, including default notices, scheduled auctions and bank repossessions, according to public records compiled by RealtyTrac. That's a 34 percent drop from 2010.During the final three months of 2011, lenders were taking 348 days on average to push properties all the way through the foreclosure process, up 24 percent from the third quarter of 2010."Foreclosures were in full delay mode in 2011, resulting in a dramatic drop in foreclosure activity for the year," said Brandon Moore, chief executive officer of RealtyTrac, in a statement. "The lack of clarity regarding many of the documentation and legal issues plaguing the foreclosure industry means that we are continuing to see a highly dysfunctional for...