Your vs. You’re: How to Use Your and You’re Correctly 

by Arushi Gupta

Because your and you’re are exactly the same when it comes to pronouncing them, we often tend to use them interchangeably while writing as well. However, they have far different meanings. In this article, we’ll help you remember which one to use among your vs. you’re so that when it comes to choosing between the two words, you’re your own best resource. 

Difference between your and you’re

The difference between your and you’re is that your shows ownership, whereas you’re is a contraction of “you are.” For example, if you say, “Your book is on the shelf,” you mean that the book belongs to the person you are addressing. On the other hand, if you say, “You’re the best person for the job,” you mean “you are” the best person for the job. 

When to use your vs. you’re

You’re is simply a contraction used in place of ‘you are’. It has no other uses. This rule is valid all the time, without any exceptions. If you cannot expand it to “you are” in your sentence, then it is being used incorrectly.  

When it comes to your, use it in your sentences in these three cases:

  • To show it belongs to “you.” 

For example, 

your toy, your cycle, your dog 

  • To show it is of “you.”  

For example, 

your portrait, your clothes, your bag 

  • To show it is related to “you.” 

For example,

your grandmother, your father, your sibling 

Pro Tip: A big reason why people get these confused here is the association of apostrophes with possession, which is based on the common addition of ‘s to a person’s name to show possession, as in Greg’s house or Diana’s car

Remember to not confuse your and you’re due to this.  

Common writing errors in academic writing

You’re and your examples

Here are some examples to help you understand the difference between your and you’re. 

  • Your: Please bring your book to the class. 
  • You’re: You’re the most talented person in our team. 
  • Your: Is that your car parked outside? 

  • You’re: You’re the reason why I love my job. 
  • Your: I like your dress. 
  • You’re: You’re always welcome to join us. 

  • Your: Your house is lovely. 
  • You’re: I hope you’re enjoying the party. 

Thankfully, once you understand the key differences between you and you’re, the correct use of these terms should be the last of your worries. Now, you can move on to other frequently mixed-up pairs, like week vs. weak, to vs. too or intra vs. inter

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