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Benjy Katchen

Wahi is a digital real estate platform that uses state-of-the-art tools and best-in-class realtors to bring control, choice, and confidence to consumers on their real estate journey. Wahi’s mission is to reclaim real estate for Canadians by providing a better way to buy and sell real estate on their terms.

Tell us about yourself?

Prior to launching Wahi, Benjy led the growth of Oaken Financial, a $4.5B digital consumer banking business, which he founded in 2012. Benjy’s three-decade career spans leading, growing, and serving on the boards of numerous digital consumer businesses, which combine his passions for entrepreneurship, digital innovation, and building amazing customer experiences.

Leading Wahi combines all three of these passions. Real estate is a fascinating consumer business, but in many ways, it is conducted more traditionally than other sectors where digital innovation has taken off much more quickly. I’m motivated by the untapped opportunity to combine the best of both worlds – digital and kind, empathetic humans working in unison for the sake of the consumer.

What problem does your business solve?

Wahi understands that buying and selling a home is one of life’s biggest decisions and wants to empower Canadians to take control of their real estate journey by providing them with free access to innovative digital tools and connecting them to trusted industry experts. There isn’t a one-size-fits-all approach to real estate, and Wahi’s data-driven model offers an alternative to traditional real estate transactions by putting the consumer in the driver’s seat with an abundance of information and expertise at their fingertips.

What is the inspiration behind your business?

Wahi is inspired by tipping the scales to create a more equitable system for buying and selling real estate in Canada. By being open and transparent every step of the way, we strive to empower consumers to make better, more informed decisions.

What is your magic sauce?

There are many elements that work together to set Wahi apart: As a digital-first platform, we believe in the power of technology and innovation to transform the real estate game for the better, but we also recognize the value of the human touch in delivering a quality experience. That’s why we complement our digital suite of tools with access to Licensed Wahi Experts to ensure users are supported every step of the way.

Wahi also takes a more localized approach to real estate, and we are the only digital real estate platform that offers streamlined, historical data for almost 400 GTA neighbourhoods. In fact, our Neighbourhood Finder tool can help Canadians find their best-suited area based on their lifestyle, needs, goals, and interests.

Wahi’s range of homebuyer and seller services is unmatched on the market as we provide five different ways to buy and sell real estate (two ways to buy, three ways to sell), giving Canadians options to help them choose the path that works best for them.

Committed to putting Canadians in the driver’s seat, Wahi is also able to offer more competitive pricing and services due to its various tools and commission structures. For example, as a digital brokerage, Wahi provides a market-leading offer to homebuyers, where it can return up to 70 per cent of the buyer’s fee on every sale and pass those savings onto the buyer in cash back. For an average buy, this is approximately 1.75 per cent of the total price returned – for an average GTA property, this puts about $20,000 back in your pocket.

What is the plan for the next 5 years? What do you want to achieve?

Over the next five years, we will continue to grow our consumer base and evolve our tools and services to deliver the best data, insights, and user-experience to support Canadians’ real estate journeys.

Currently, Wahi only operates within the Greater Toronto Area, and we look forward to expanding to other cities and markets.

What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced so far?

With so many digital property browsing platforms available to Canadians, the biggest challenge so far has been building awareness of Wahi as a key player in Canadian real estate. We are confident in the industry-leading tools, proprietary data, and services we provide to GTA homebuyers and sellers, and we are looking forward to continuing building our user base.

How can people get involved?

Canadians can learn more about Wahi’s digital real estate platform and its state-of-the-art tools, data, and experiences by visiting or downloading our app.