I have encountered the following sentences:



Why do these sentences NOT use 住在? I have learned that takes in order to take the location noun after that.

Or maybe is it a chance that carries completely different meanings from 住在, and the both are grammatically correct?

  • as dictionaries e。g。iciba will show, 住在(larger geographical unit, e.g. country, city),住(building, street address) also 家住(address)e.g. iciba:2. Florence Sephton is 77 and lives in Deganwy, North Wales. 弗洛伦斯-塞福顿,77岁, 家住北威尔士的迪根维.
    – user6065
    Jul 6, 2015 at 17:37
  • "larger geographical unit" can be quite small (look up iciba: 住在, e.g. 2.欧内斯特·布朗住在离骚乱发生处几个街区远的地方) also for "stay at a hotel", cf.《清网行动》 第1集,时间标记36:01--- 35:53:根据汤姆的交代35:56:这两个人 一个叫王霞 女性 35:58:另一个人叫刘刚 男性 35:59:甚高一米一36:01:现在两个人住在东州酒店
    – user6065
    Jul 22, 2015 at 1:28

3 Answers 3


I am a native Chinese speaker. We say "住这样的房子" or "住在这样的房子里". These two are both correct, and they mean the same thing.

"住在这样的房子" sounds wrong to me."住这样的房子里" may be correct but sounds weird.

As you may have already known, the time "以前" or "现在" do not affect the form of the verb.

Hope this helps!

  • Hi, I have a question about English for you. Do you English speakers say "As you may have already known", "As you may know", or "As you may already know" in the above sentence? Thanks! :)
    – Zack
    Jul 6, 2015 at 21:52
  • Yup, it sounds fine to me. (English speaker here)
    – Ajean
    Jul 6, 2015 at 23:51
  • 1
    @Zack Both sound fine, however if you look up NGram, 'as you (may) have already known' is extremely rare while 'as you (may) know' is quite common. The perfect tense is unnecessary for most contexts this phrase is used.
    – NS.X.
    Jul 7, 2015 at 3:25
  • "As you may have already known" isn't really used (past tense makes it sound like you knew at one stage, but don't know now.) However, "As you may know" and "As you may already know" are used. EDIT: oh, I didn't refresh so I didn't see @NS.X. already commented to this effect.
    – Ming
    Jul 7, 2015 at 6:33
  • 1
    As the one who passed by and found the topic interesting I didn't find the conclusion. When would you use 在 after 住 and when not? Is there a rule for that or something?
    – UVV
    Jul 7, 2015 at 7:39

Agree with @Zack. Unfortunately it seems to me there is no clear cut rule here, you'll have to learn by heart.

我住北京 vs 我住在北京 both are fine

我住城市/乡村 vs 我住在城市/乡村 first is natural, second is tiny bit less common, but just fine as well

我住高楼大厦 vs 我住在高楼大厦 as in the example, second sounds wrong, although everyone can understand you mean 我住在高楼大厦


I think the difference is the focus of the sentence. I'll give an example of what I mean:


The natural breakdown of this in speech would be like:我住 - 这里

The focus is on the action of you living here.


Here, the natural breakdown of the sentence is like: 我 - 住在 - 这里

This breakdown is a bit different. The "you" is separated by the gaps in sentence from the action of living here. I think it puts greater emphasis on the "you".

To go back to the original question:



The important part of these sentences isn't the people themselves, new or old, but the fact that they live in a certain type of house. And so, I think it makes more sense to use 住 instead of 住在.

  • I disagree with this answer. I don't feel that 我 is stressed in any way here.
    – Vlo
    Jul 7, 2015 at 3:50
  • I think the difference is minute, but still there.
    – Ringil
    Jul 7, 2015 at 11:06

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