The Legend

Who We Are and How We Got Here

Legend Design started with a vision to revitalize transitioning neighborhoods in the city limits of Charlotte, one house at a time. Taking advantage of the emerging demand for the urban lifestyle, rehabbing homes and building new construction in Villa Heights, Belmont, Noda and Midwood, offering modern finishes, while keeping the character of the original architecture. Working with both investors and home owners, we understand the need to balance style, function and value with every project. We have extensively researched the most sustainable and affordable building methodologies to bring clients the best finish for their budget.

John Costanzo

John Costanzo, co-founder of Legend Design, is no stranger to real estate or business operations and has been an active broker in the Carolinas for almost 10 years, serving the investor and retail buyer. Prior to his career in Real Estate, John had received his BS degree in marketing from Virginia Commonwealth University, which lead him to the growing wireless communications industry in the mid-90’s. After a few years in the corporate world, John decided to start his own company and successfully owned and operated several wireless communication stores throughout Charlotte, Columbia and Charleston for almost 15 years. This experience and entrepreneurial spirit gave him the foundation and drive to pursue other ventures outside of his communication background, and when his older brother from Las Vegas approached him about Real Estate investing, he was hooked. With the mentoring of his brother and extensive investment experience and success, they together sold over 75 investment properties to West coast investors over a 2-year period. Together, they formed a team of investors to help fund projects and John managed a team of subcontractors and oversaw the acquisition, design and construction side.

Once again, their partnership proved successful and together they flipped close to 20 homes in and around Charlotte from 2013-2016. John continued to grow his building relationships and started Cygnus Homes as his stand-alone company and hired Ben Penland, General Contractor of The Verawood Group to help oversee and manage construction on a few larger remodels and new builds, while pursuing other opportunities and managing smaller rehabs. It was that defining time when John and Ben realized their combined skill sets would enable them to grow and diversify into new construction, remodels, custom builds and light commercial. A level of trust, friendship and professionalism, along with an honest work ethic helped them form their company, Legend Design.

John has lived in the Charlotte area for almost 20 years, and currently resides in Fort Mill with his family of 4 children and 2 dogs. He enjoys mountain bike riding, running and weight training along with sharing a good bottle of wine and tasty cuisine with his wife Kris, when they have a free moment.

Ben Penland

Raised as the son of a custom builder, Ben grew up on construction sites as far back as he can remember. He started young, just helping keep the job sites tidy and carrying material. Later he developed his skills as a framer and trim carpenter. Ben obtained a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration from UNC Charlotte and developed a growing interest in the management and business side of construction. He worked as a Superintendent for K. Hovnanian Homes where he honed his construction management skills and learned the efficiencies of production building. After several years in the production world, Ben decided to return to his roots of custom home building and became a licensed North Carolina General Contractor.

While working on various custom speculative builds around the uptown Charlotte area, Ben and John crossed paths and contracted to partner on several projects. Once they realized how well they worked together they formed Legend Design to maximize their potential.

Ben enjoys life and has lived in Charlotte since 2002. Aside from his passion for construction and development, he enjoys playing golf and practicing his marksmanship at the shooting range. He and his wife, Julie, also enjoy traveling, hanging out at breweries with their Cane Corso, and attending local concerts and sporting events – Go Panthers & Hornets!!!