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Going back about three decades when my wife and I were looking to buy a home in Mesa, Ariz., our real estate agent often took us to open houses. We never bought any of those properties, instead acquiring a house the agent found through the local listing service.

Back then, it was fairly common to drive through neighborhoods and see signs for other open houses. Then as the years went by, it became less and less common to see those same signs. I never thought much about it since my wife and I haven’t been in the market for a new home, preferring to stay in the house we found all those years ago.