Skip to content
Keystone_Sandy_Website_sm

NEW HOME QUESTIONS?
EMAIL OR CALL SANDY!

Get Started

While all real estate agents are welcome, you do not need to bring in an outside agent. We have neighborhood experts in each neighborhood. Each is knowledgeable about our homes from how they are built to incentives, to individual home site specifications and much more!

They are happy to show our homes, send you any information you may need, and even help you write an agreement on your perfect new home! Long after you move in, you know where to find them with any new home questions you may have.

An online sales counselor is a person who works directly for the builder. She is not a real estate agent. She is set up to answer any new home questions you may have. She helps realtors and customers find available homes, home plans, neighborhood incentives, pricing, included features, build on your land info and much more! When you are ready, she will set up an appointment with a neighborhood specialist so you can view the homes in person!

The best person to contact with any general or new home questions is Sandy, our online sales counselor. She is available 7 days a week and happy to answer any questions you may have. You can reach her by phone, text or email (706) 538-4880 or sbarsiq@buildkeystone.com.

For warranty questions or concerns, email the warranty department at warranty@buildkeystone.com

For general plan photos, simply click on Find Your Home → Home Plans → Then the plan you want to see! Scroll down to find a 3D tour and many photos of the plan’s interior, plus the home plan!

For specific home photos, if the home is completed, you can click on Find Your Home → Quick Move­‐In Homes and then the home of your choosing. If the photo says “These are sample photos of the plan” professional photos have not been taken yet. In this case, call Sandy your OSC, at (706) 538‐4880, and she can locate some for you to view.

You are more than welcome to simply show up at our model homes during site hours! Please note that neighborhood experts occasionally have to leave to show other available homes at this time when other customers walk in. They also have to attend VIP appointments and closings that may occur during site hours. The best course of action, to protect your time, would be to call and schedule a VIP appointment in advance. This ensures that the neighborhood expert is there and dedicated to you and your home buying needs, no matter who else should walk into the model home.

A quick move‐in home is one that a builder starts before someone has purchased it. The design choices have been made by the design specialist at Keystone. It is either ready or will be ready much sooner than a presale. A presale home is one where you select the home plan, homesite, features and design selec=ons. Keystone then builds the home to your specifications. The price is the same (barring any up grade choices or homesite premiums).

No! You do not have to pay any realtor commissions. Whether you bring an outside agent, or use one of our knowledgeable neighborhood experts, Keystone will pay all realtor commissions for you, so you don’t have to worry!

Yes, but Keystone does not require you to do so. Looking at homes is, of course, free. However, there is always the possibility that you may fall in love with something that you see. Some like to know what they can spend before they fall in love with something. For these folks, we would recommend speaking with an approved lender first. Some people do not want to go through the hassle of speaking with a lender until they have found what they are looking for. You do have a 21-­day financing contingency with any Keystone agreement.

This gives you time to speak to your lender after you find what you are looking for and get your letter of prequalification. The only downside with this option is the possibility that you may go through all of that, only to find out you cannot get qualified for the amount you were hoping for. You will still get your deposit back, but we do not want to see anyone go through this.

Design Studio

Keystone orders all the materials for each home we build before we even start the home. If you are interested in an under‐construction home, the process is as follows:

First, have your neighborhood specialist reach out to the Design Studio requesting a timeline on what changes can be made. The Design Studio manager will then reach out to each appropriate trade partner to discover which materials have already been built/ordered. Once you have received the list of possible changes, you will need to make an offer on the home and schedule a design studio appointment as quickly as possible.

We do not typically offer preview appointments, however, in special circumstances we may offer this option and, if eligible, this appointment would be conducted by appointment only.

In order to find out if this may be an option for you, please have your neighborhood specialist reach out to schedule your appointment. Please keep in mind, the purpose of this appointment is to get a general idea of options/selections, not make the full color options/selections on your home.

Although possible, we do not recommend making changes to Keystone plans for a few reasons. We build our plans the same way many times which helps to eliminate waste and mistakes. When designing our plans, we take into consideration, cost efficiency, material usage, construction time and mass appeal for resale value. Plan changes can affect cost, build time and may make the home less desirable to future buyers.

If you decide you do need to make a plan change, please refer to our plan change policy for required fees and deposits. In addition, changes may increase the home price without increasing the appraised value, making it more difficult to finance the changes.

Your design consultant will send you a greeting email to schedule your appointment shortly after your agreement is finalized and you are preapproved with a lender. You will need to have your design appointment and finalize all selections and options within 14 calendar days of finalizing your agreement, in order for your home to stay on schedule.

In your design appointment, you will make all of the color and option selections for your home. In the Keystone Design Studio, we offer color selection options that will personalize your home, but not so many that you will find making selections overwhelming. You will choose your exterior colors from siding and trim, to shutters and stone. In your interior you will make color selections from, cabinets, hardware, and countertops, to flooring and tile. Your design consultant will make you aware of all included options as well as additional options investments.

To prepare for your design appointment, please consider how you will utilize each space in your home, how you want it to feel and function. Consider upgrade options that will better help you use the space, from surfaces, to electrical, plumbing, shelving, etc. Please review your neighborhoods included features to know what will come with your home and what you may want to add. Also, visit our website’s inspiration gallery or drive through one of our communities for color inspiration.

If you closed on your Keystone Home in recent years, you likely received your color selection sheet in your closing folder as well as a small container of touch up paint left in the home. If your home was built prior to 2012, unfortunately, we likely no longer have your color information. If your home was built after 2012, please email Robyn at rnelson@buildkeystone.com with your home address and what color info you are looking for.

We cannot guarantee that we will have this information, but we will do our best to find it for you.  Also keep in mind that even if we are able to tell you the paint color used in your home, we cannot guarantee that buying new paint in that same color will match exactly what is on your walls.  This is because paint begins to fade and change quickly after going on the wall because of lighting, air quality, etc., and because each batch of paint will vary slightly.

Construction

We pride ourselves on being professional homebuilders. We are process driven, meaning we efficiently plan every part of the home building process in order to deliver an exceptionally designed home.

We strive to eliminate errors and build your home in a timely manner. We are a lean builder which means we have minimal waste on our job sites thereby reducing our environmental impact and reducing the cost to build a home. Keystone is also made up of a team of well-trained people who want to always give you accurate information and build a quality finished home.

We use a different closing attorney for each area we build in. We use these attorneys because they are familiar with us and our processes which helps eliminate errors and time delays. Below are the attorneys we use.

  1. Augusta Area: Donald H. White, P.C.
    924 Stevens Creek Road, Augusta, GA 30907
  2. Aiken Area: Donald H. White, P.C. North Augusta Office
    511 W Martintown Rd, North Augusta, SC 29841
  3. Statesboro Area: Taulbee, Rushing, Snipes, Marsh, & Hodgin LLP
    Stephen T. Rushing
    12 Siebald St, Statesboro, GA 30458
  4. Savannah Area: Mcnamara & Adams
    Tom Mcnamara
    7370 Hodgson Memorial Dr, Savannah, GA 31406

We have knowledgeable neighborhood specialists in each of our communities who can inform you of amenities, included features, schools and nearby attractions. Please visit one of our model homes to speak with someone today, or call Sandy (706-538-4880) to set up an appointment.

Keystone reviews agreements during the Monday- Friday business hours. You should receive a response within 24-48 hours. We strive to respond as quickly as possible, but please keep in mind we frequently are considering multiple agreements at once and may prioritize the better offers.

Yes, many home-buyers don't realize the home is inspected by Keystone builders, trade partners and government inspectors throughout the home building process. Upon completion, Keystone also completes its own 14-page completed home checklist to ensure a quality finished product, however, you may certainly employ your own inspector.

Keystone can build your home in 90-120 days. The first 30 days of the construction process are spent applying for permits, making color selections, drawing plans, issuing purchase orders, etc. Please keep in mind that the construction process is affected by outside factors, such as weather and local jurisdictions. But rest assured we will do everything we can to deliver your home on time

Each of our quick move-in homes are homes that are under construction and at various stages of completion. Please visit each home on the quick move-in page of our website to see the percentage complete. Typically, a home at 0-20% is 90 days from completion. A home at 30-40% is 60 days from completion. And a home at 60-70% is 30 days from completion.

In some jurisdictions, you will be able to apply for a homestead exemption. Please make sure to do this during your first year in your home in order to save on property taxes. You may also get deductions on your federal and state income tax returns for mortgage interest.

HERS stands for Home Energy Rating Score. Basically, it’s a measure of energy efficiency and calculated using the specs of the home and tested with a blower door and duct blast test. A HERS rating of 100 is the rating a new, to code home would have. Keystone, as of the time of this writing, has a 68 HERS rating score.

Why would this matter to you as a prospect or buyer? Because this saves you money on your energy bill! Refer to our blog "How a New-Construction Home Can Save You Money" for more information on the HERS rating and energy efficiency.

Owning a new construction home can save you money in many ways and the following are just a few. First, they are constructed to the newest energy standards- this means your home is energy efficient- and as a result, you'll save money on your energy bill! Your appliances, roof, systems and all else are brand new, which makes them much less likely to require replacement or repair, at least for some time.

In the event that you are in need of repair, Keystone provides a Quality Builders Warranty (QBW) warranty which may save you some out of pocket expenses on repairs so long as they qualify for coverage per the QBW warranty terms.

Financing

The required minimum credit score may vary per lender, with some lenders financing your home with a score starting at 580.

This amount depends on your loan type, how much money you put down, whether or not you'll be required to pay PMI, how much you pay in property taxes (which vary by location) and your interest rate. For a general estimate, visit our financing page where you will find a mortgage home calculator that will help you estimate your monthly payment.

Your lender should be able to provide you an estimate of your closing costs, but closing costs are typically between 2% and 5% of your home purchase price.

Down payment depends on your loan type. An FHA loan will require 3.5% down, a conventional loan will require 5% down and USDA and VA loans are both 0% down if you Qualify.

In most neighborhoods, Keystone will require $500 in earnest money, however, more may be required under certain circumstances.

We recommend you speak to your lender and familiarize yourself with your options so that you can decide which option is best for you. An adjustable rate mortgage (ARM) is a loan in which the interest rate can change and a fixed rate mortgage is a mortgage loan in which the interest rate does not change.

ARM payments are typically lower in the beginning and allow borrowers who may not otherwise afford the payment to be able to afford it, however, it will increase over the life of the loan and this can be quite a shock to your budget when that happens. Fixed rate mortgages interest rates always stay the same so that you know what to expect and can budget accordingly.

Mortgage points, also known as discount points, are fees added to a buyers closing costs and collected costs and collected at closing in exchange for a reduced interest rate.

Most financial experts will advise that you pay no more than 28% of your gross income per month for household expenses, including your mortgage payment.

In short, yes, It is always good to talk to a lender before looking at homes so that you know the dollar amount you’ve been approved for and so that you can talk through how much you want to spend on your new home. This will help you narrow down which neighborhoods or floorplans would work best for your budget!

If you are looking to buy in a rural area or are a veteran, you may qualify for a USDA or VA loan. If you qualify, you won't be required to pay a down payment, meaning you would be able to finance 100% of your home purchase.

Warranty

Be sure to review the warranty manual you were given at closing, prior to submitting your repair request to ensure your repair items qualify under the warranty terms. For warrantable repair requests, please visit the Quality Builders Warranty SOS website here to submit your repair request.

Katelyn Levy can help you resolve any issues you may have submitting your repair request. Her best method of contact is via email at warranty@buildkeystone.com. However, if you need to reach her by phone, you can do so by dialing 706-651-0075 extension 307.

The Quality Builders Warranty we provide offers a 10 year structural, 2 year limited system (HVAC, electrical, plumbing), 1 year workmanship warranty.)

If you would like access to a digital copy of our warranty manual, you're in the right place. Click here for a direct link.

The following issues are considered emergency repair items and warrant calling our trade partners directly: Roof leak, total loss of electricity, plumbing leak, HVAC unit not working and unsafe, unsanitary and unlivable conditions.

If you have an emergency repair request, please contact the appropriate trade partner directly. Their information can be found here.

Unfortunately, Keystone does not have a home maintenance division at this time.

Zillow

You may already be familiar with Zillow, one of the top online real estate databases, alongside Trulia. 

Zillow spends money on marketing efforts to make sure that when you search for homes, their website is one of the first few to appear in your search. This can be super helpful but, at times, confusing because the data shown may not always be accurate.  

Agents put their listings into the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) and Zillow pulls that information and shows the listings as Zillow’s proprietary information. Hence, why you may see our listings on Zillow. Unfortunately, sometimes during the transfer, information may be lost or transferred incorrectly, which is why you may see a home price, location or other details that may not align with the MLS listings.

The best way to ensure that the information you are seeing is correct is to speak with our Online Sales Counselor, Neighborhood Specialists or to view the listings on our website. The listings on our website pull directly from our Keystone database. 

The mapping in Zillow is based on the information entered in MLS. If there is a road that is too “young” or new, it may not register in the MLS system. The agents will set up a map icon to the approximate location and when the data is imported into Zillow, there is a chance that the map point may end up in a slightly different location.

To avoid confusion, please contact us at 706-538-4880, before visiting the home-site, so that we can ensure that you have the correct approximate location or so that we can send you accurate turn-by-turn directions to your destination.

As mentioned in previous FAQ’s, from time to time, there may be inaccuracies on Zillow, to which are outside of our control.  We understand that this can be frustrating, however, to ensure the accuracy of information regarding Keystone Homes, please review our Quick-Move-In Homes section for all of the details regarding our available listings.  

We strive to keep the information listed in the MLS, as accurate and updated as possible, so if you experience any issues, see any inaccuracies, or have any questions please contact us at 706-538-4880 and we will take great care to resolve this. We want to give you the best and easiest experience possible when searching for your new home.

Keystone Homes - Mark Gilliam headshot

MARK GILLIAM

Mark began working with Keystone at its founding in 1995. Mark oversees all company operations and manages the development of new neighborhoods. Mark is licensed as a General and Residential Contractor in Georgia and South Carolina. He also has Real Estate Broker’s licenses in Georgia and South Carolina. Mark is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and Certified Management Accountant (CMA). He graduated from Augusta University with both a BBA and MBA. He earned Residential Construction Superintendent, Certified Graduate Builder, Certified Sales Professional and Graduate Master Builder designations from the National Association of Homebuilders. Mark currently serves on the boards of the Coalition for Quality Government and the Builders Association of Metro Augusta. He enjoys working with Keystone’s excellent staff and Trade Partners in order to serve Keystone’s home-buyers. In his free time, Mark enjoys hunting, fishing, watching football and jet skiing with his wife, Laura.

Scroll To Top