The number of homeless families in the region has increased nearly 10 percent since 2007, according to preliminary estimates by the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments, which conducts a “point in time” head count of the homeless each January.

Census takers from the consortium of localities spread out to dozens of shelters and safe havens around the area on the night of Jan. 26 and found 11,988 homeless, up from 11,774 in 2010.

Of those, 6,673 were singles and 5,315 were families. The number of single homeless decreased from last year’s 6,779 figure; the numbers of families increased from 4,995 last year.

The number of homeless families has increased 9.5 percent since 2007, a result of the tanking economy and increase in foreclosures in the area.

This post has been updated since it was first published.