The Difference Between Addendums and Amendments!

By
Real Estate Agent with Carolina One Real Estate

As an American one of the things I hold most dear is the Constitution of the United States which include a Bill of Rights.  The Bill of Rights is the first 10 "addendum's" of the constitution....wait that's not right.  Well if we left it up to many real estate agents that's what they would call it.  For some reason (maybe because most of us did not go to law school or take law classes in college or high school) many Realtors and a large number of people in the population confuse addendums and what the Bill of Rights is truly called, amendments.

An addendum is defined as any change made to a contract, or an addition to the contract before it is ratified.  A popular addendum is the FHA addendum that states that the buyer is utilizing the FHA program to finance the house.  All parties should sign this before ratification and that addendum becomes part of the contract. 

One of the biggest fallacies that agents use is the "repairs addendum."  Going back to the definition of addendum, a repair addendum is only accurately used if it is utilized before ratification.  Most people do not inspect the home before the contract ratification thus "repair addendum" is not accurate.  If one wishes to add the repairs to the contract after ratification it should be an amendment. Note:  my suggestion is to never make the repair list a part of the original contract but rather a separate entity which both parties agree too.

An amendment is a change or addition to a contract after it has been ratified.  Case in point is the example of our country's Constitution.  The constitution was written as a contract between the first 13 states.  James Madison promised to incorporate a Bill of Rights once the Constitution was ratified.   Upon ratification of the constitution, the first 10 amendments were written.   

So, the next time you need to make a change to your ratified contract, remember our founding fathers could not use an addendum and neither can you.

 

Photo source: http://www.pierretristam.com/images2/i07a/0223-first-amendment.jpg

 

Michael J. Johnson

843-817-5299

www.providingthelight.com

 

 

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If you have a home anywhere in the Charleston Metro Area and would like to get more information about selling your home, please contact me for a free home evaluation. 

I also work with buyers.  If you are interested in more information about buying a home please contact me and I would be glad to meet with you or email you a list of homes.

 

Michael J. Johnson, Realtor, ABR

www.metrocharlestonhomes.com

843-817-5299

michaeljohnson@carolinaone.com

"Providing the Light to Guide You Home"

 

 

 

 

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Rainmaker
432,693
Stanley Stepak
Howard Hanna Gold- Avon Lake, OH - Avon Lake, OH
Realtor - Avon Lake, Avon, Bay Village, Westlake,

Thank you, Thank you.  I have miss used this term one too many times in the last 3 years when I should know better. 

October 16, 2008 10:32 PM #1
Rainmaker
172,762
Michael Johnson
Carolina One Real Estate - Goose Creek, SC
Metro Charleston SC

Stanley -  I'm glad I could help.

October 17, 2008 09:13 AM #2
Rainer
6,292
Carolyn Leiter
Coldwell Banker Roth Wehrly Graber - Warsaw, IN
Serving Buyers and Sellers since 1988

I have tried for 21 years to get it through to fellow agents...addendum means to 'add on to'

amendment means to change an existing agreement.......Thanks for your affirmation.

February 26, 2009 08:23 AM #3
Anonymous
Anonymous
man

This is misleading because addenda are often added after a contract has been signed.  In fact, before it is agreed to or signed a contract is not a contract but a peice of paper.  You can amend a contract by adding an addenda, it has nothing to do with when it was signed. 

October 18, 2012 03:25 PM #4
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Rainmaker
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Michael Johnson

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