Hope Now, a consortium of mortgage firms and nonprofits focused on foreclosure prevention, revealed an estimated 81,351 homeowners received permanent, affordable loan modifications from servicers during the month of February.

February’s total represented a 6% increase from the month of January, when 76,755 loan modifications were finalized. The February total brings the total number of permanent loan mods from 2007 to 6.23 million.

In February, 15,386 homeowners received modifications through the government's Home Affordable Modification Program.

According to data received by the Mortgage Bankers Association, there were 49,135 foreclosure sales completed. This is a 21% drop from the 62,395 foreclosure sales recorded in January.

For the month of February, there were 193,860 foreclosure starts, which marks a 16% increase over January’s total of 167,232.

Short sales in February totaled 23,388. Since 2009, when HOPE NOW began tracking short data, approximately 1.2 million short sales have been completed. 

According to data from the MBA, delinquencies of 60 days or more dropped 2% from January to February, from 2.54 million to 2.48 million, respectively.

"More than 158,000 loan modifications have been completed in the first two months of 2013 and outreach to at-risk homeowners by the industry, non-profits, government agencies and others remains proactive," said Eric Selk, executive director of HOPE NOW.

"These results are a testament to the hard work being done on behalf of the nation’s homeowners. There are more options than ever before and the goal is to offer viable, realistic and sustainable solutions," Selk added.