Addendums to Real Estate Purchase Agreements

The addendum to a real estate purchase agreement is used to amend an existing contract between the buyer and seller. Most purchase agreements have language that states if anything is to change in the original contract that it shall be in writing. This is when addendums are used. After it’s completed and signed by the buyer and seller it should be attached to the original contract.


Bed Bug Addendum – Bed bugs are more commonly encountered in rental than sale properties, and some states require landlords to disclosure infestations, past or present. Use this addendum to inform about a bed bug condition.

Closing Date Extension Addendum – This form is used to delay a closing date. In general, once a closing date has been set in the sale contract, only a written addendum (this form) can alter it.

FHA / VA Financing Addendum – When the buyer is using FHA or VA-backed loans to finance a purchase, the federal government requires that both transaction parties – buyer and seller – sign this addendum. The FHA/VA Financing Addendum mainly stipulates that the buyer may back-out of the sale without consequence if the property appraisal comes in unexpectedly low.

Inspection Contingency Addendum – Added to a purchase agreement when the buyer would like to have a portion of the property further inspected. If any earnest money is deposited, it shall be subject to the property passing any necessary tests.

HUD Tenancy Addendum – This addendum must be completed whenever a tenant “Section 8” vouchers to help pay for rent. Even if the tenant and landlord complete a separate lease contract, this addendum must still be filled out and signed by both parties. It is the final word on any disputes.

Lead-Based Paint Addendum – The federal government requires all sellers of homes constructed before 1978 to disclose the presence of lead paint on the premises in a standard addendum, and to provide buyers with an informational pamphlet detailing the risks of lead poisoning. Landlords are similarly bound to disclose lead.

Lease Agreement Addendum – This is a general form to revise or add to the terms of an established purchase agreement. In general, these contracts are legally-binding, and may only by modified with a written addendum (this form) and the signatures of both buyer and seller.

Lease Extension Addendum – This addendum extends a lease period. Though the basic addendum maintains the terms of the original lease and keeps the monthly rent constant, the lease extension addendum may modify these elements too if so desired.

Mold Addendum – This form may be prepared in conjunction with a lease. Typically, it includes a declaration from the property owner that the premises are free of mold, guidelines for the tenant on preventing the growth of new mold, and possibly, additional mold-specific terms to which the tenant is asked to agree.

Pet Addendum – This form addresses pets in a rental property. While these pet rules and disclosures are often set directly in the rental agreement, they can be tacked on in an addendum if necessary.

Seller Financing Addendum – Complete this addendum when a seller is providing financing for a residential transaction.

Short Sale Addendum – This document sets conditions for a short sale. Since the seller will not be able to complete a short sale transaction without authorization from the lien holder, this addendum will usually establish a deadline for getting this go-ahead. If the seller fails to secure authorization by that date, then the buyer is released from the transaction and refunded any earnest money or other deposits.

Third (3rd) Party Financing Addendum – In certain jurisdictions, such as Texas, a Third (3rd) Party Financing Addendum must be completed when a real estate transaction will be partially or fully financed with third party funding.

Addendum vs Amendment

While both the terms, Addendum and Amendment are used interchangeably quite often, they each have their own distinct meaning and contractual impact. The term Amendment identifies a component of a contract that is created when one or more parties are interested in the modification of any existing terms that have been previously discussed. However, in regard to an Addendum, it is used to add additional language to a contract. This means the terms and conditions already defined in the contract will continue to remain, and additional terms and conditions are to be added to the currently existing contract. This can occur if an initially agreed upon term was not included, or a brand-new term that is being agreed upon, is to be added. With that, an Addendum can also serve as a means to provide additional information or details to terms that were already existing in the document, a clarifying component to the contract.

However, an Addendum can also serve to cancel or modify a pre-existing clause or condition. Of note, Amendments can be known as documents meant to improve or correct the first document that was presented. Therefore, this means that the Amendment are only part of the contract until negotiations. On the other hand, the Addendum does remain as part of the agreement in it’s entirety. An additionally difference is that the Amendment may only be made the parties who signed the original document. The Addendum differs in that it can be made by any party, regardless if they signed the original document or not but it must be signed by all parties in order to take effect

Addendum vs Appendix

While both an Addendum and an Appendix may be added at the end of a contract, they have additional varying purposes and meanings that separate them. An Addendum may be added to an already existing contract by any party that deems appropriate. An Addendum can serve to clarify existing conditions or terms in the contract that could be misclassified or construed as up to interpretation. This can pose a risk within the contract which can cause any party to then include an Addendum within the contract. Furthermore, Addendums can be added as entirely new components to contracts which were not part of the initial negotiation of a contract. Addendums can also remove, cancel or change previous portions of the contract. An Appendix is much simpler and serves to clarify and explain terms or words utilized within the contract. It may provide additional information (facts, definitions, statistics, history, etc.) with regard to a particular section of a contract. The material serves as supplementary details for both parties or individuals interested in the contract. Therefore, the Addendum is most known as a piece of the contract that was not previously included and is being added or will not be included moving forward, and the Appendix is informational details serving as definitions that could be useful to any party reading the contract.

Addenda vs Addendum

The terms Addenda and Addendum are most similar in that they are inclusive of the same components. They both make some form of change, addition, deletion, or clarifying content within a contract or agreement that has already been established. They can both be added by any interested party; however, they must be signed by all parties for which the contract causes an impact. It is common for all parties to meet prior to the full drafting of the Addendum or the Addenda to carve out the details and ensure understanding. This will certify it takes effect appropriately. However, with a contract that consists of multiple changes, additions, deletions and so forth, instead of creating multiple Addendums, and Addenda can then be created. One Addenda can be created for multiple changes, as it is considered the plural version of an Addendum. The process would continue to be the same and the document would still be enforceable, as well as be part of the existing legally binding contract in its entirety. Additionally, both he Addenda and the Addendum can be utilized to add any missing or new disclosures (as required by State or Federal law), in regard to a real estate contract.


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