About Us

Choosing to partner with us is opting for a journey in high-end home acquisition, seasoned with several years of hands-on experience in the upscale home building industry. What makes us stand out isn’t just the passage of time, but our knack for understanding what truly makes a home in these exclusive communities exceptional.

We’ve got a sharp eye for the finer details that define luxury living, ensuring that every aspect, from architectural nuances to top-notch amenities, meets the highest standards. Our wealth of knowledge isn’t just a byproduct of our years in the game; it’s a pledge to provide you with insights and guidance that go beyond the ordinary. Working with us isn’t just a transaction; it’s a chance to tap into a well of expertise that sets a new standard in high-end real estate.

Joel was born in Kalamazoo, Michigan, raised in Grand Rapids and now spends his time living in Northern Michigan and the Florida Keys. His education armed him with an Economics degree from Calvin College and Joel’s entrepreneurial spirit led him to initiate several small businesses during and post-college. It wasn’t long before the real estate and building industry became his passion. Engaging in home renovations and sales, Joel acquired his builders and real estate brokers license along the way. In 1996, he laid the foundation for Insignia Homes, contributing to its growth until 2013, when he ventured into establishing his company J. Peterson Homes.

Empire Michigan Home

Though holding a real estate license for several years and successfully closing over $100 million in real estate and construction transactions, Northern Legacy Properties signifies a concentrated effort in the realm of real estate distinct from his notable focus on luxury home building.

With a robust background in the construction industry, we offer a significant asset in the process of buying or selling lake homes.  This comprehensive understanding becomes a distinct advantage, providing heightened scrutiny and proficiency in evaluating the true value of lakefront properties. Joel is dedicated to aligning decisions with clients’ goals. For more information on our professional background and what sets us apart, please read more here. 

Joel’s personal life is as rich as his professional journey. Celebrating over 30 years of marriage with Kris, they are proud parents to three adult children who all recently graduated from college and share their home with a spirited bird dog named Riggins. Despite his extensive travels across Northern Michigan, Joel finds solace in Leland and the Florida Keys. His leisure pursuits include travel with Kris, hunting, fishing, and ski trips out west. Adding a philanthropic touch to his busy schedule, Joel dedicates his time to mentoring at-risk public school children through KidsHope USA.