This Saturday and Sunday, April 28-29, realtors from coast to coast will host thousands of open houses while engaging consumers on the benefits of homeownership and bringing buyers and sellers together during Realtor Nationwide Open House Weekend, which is organized by state and local realtor associations across the country.

“Realtor Nationwide Open House is a fantastic opportunity for those interested in homeownership to connect with a realtor who can offer expert guidance and advice on the home buying process,” said National Association of Realtors President Moe Veissi, broker-owner of Veissi & Associates Inc., in Miami. “During the weekend realtors will be on hand to answer questions about the local housing market and provide insights into the social and financial benefits of homeownership. Open houses are also a great way for potential buyers to get a feel for what is available in their local market.”

According to NAR’s 2011 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers 45 percent of all buyers used open houses as a source in their home search process. In addition, buyers in the Northeast region are significantly more likely to use open houses, followed by those in the Midwest region. Women are more likely to use open houses than men, as are buyers who were not born in the U.S. or whose primary language is not English. Older buyers rely more on open houses than younger buyers, and buyers with higher incomes are also more likely to visit open houses.

“For buyers who can qualify for a mortgage and are willing and able to take on the responsibilities of homeownership, now is a very good time to become a homeowner,” said Veissi. “And for those consumers, Realtor Nationwide Open House is a great way to kick off the home buying season and learn more about housing issues and the local real estate market.”

To find open houses in your area, visit www.Realtor.comand search for open houses in the Realtor Nationwide Open House Weekend box on the home page. The special search function will be available beginning April 26.