There, Their, They’re | Examples & Meanings

Grammar Rules updated on  February 22, 2024 3 min read

There shows location or existence, their shows possession, and they’re shows condition (they are).

There, their, and they’re are homophones, so they sound the same but have different spellings and meanings.

There vs their vs they’re

It’s easier to understand the differences between these homophones when you can see them. Here are examples of there, their, and they’re in a sentence.

There meaning and usage

There has several meanings, all showing where something is or that it exists.

there (adv.): at a certain place, time, stage, or way; as it is

Examples: There (adv.) in a sentence
Please have a seat right there.
Is anyone there?
There, I said it.

there (pron.): used as an introductory word or to address a person directly

Examples: There (pron.) in a sentence
There are many reasons to eat more veggies
Cyd looked for a chance to speak up, but there wasn’t one.
Well, hello there. How are you?

there (n.): a certain place or time (literal or figurative)

Examples: There (n.) in a sentence
It’s time to start, so let’s go in there.
Where do we go from there?
To get to the dining room, we have to walk through there.

there (adj.): used for emphasis or to show physical or mental presence

Examples: There (adj.) in a sentence
That there lawn mower is the worst one I’ve ever had.
Fatima’s mom was always there for her.
After the accident, he was so traumatized that he was not all there.

Their  meaning and usage

Their has only one meaning: possession. It can be singular or plural.

their (adj.): belonging to or related to a person or thing

Examples: Their in a sentence
It's great to meet your friends! What are their names?
Their new company just launched last month.
Thanks to their having already finished the research proposal, Malik and Omar were ahead of schedule.

They’re meaning and usage

They’re also has only one meaning, showing what kind of condition or state a person or thing is in or what they are doing.

they’re (contr.): they are

Examples: They're in a sentence
They’re not ready to leave yet.
Can you tell me when they’re planning to work on the next project?
If they’re in the room alone, Iggy and Shea can’t be trusted.

How to decide between there vs their vs they’re

There vs their vs they’re is another one of those questions that even native English speakers often grapple with. We can sum up the explanations above into a few quick memory tips to help you use them correctly:

  • There has a similar spelling to the other location words here and where.
  • Their contains I, so think of it as showing something is mine, representing possession.
  • They’re has an apostrophe, so it’s a contraction of they are.

As you write, think carefully about which word is the right one, and don’t forget to enlist the help of free tools like QuillBot to keep commonly confused words straight, perfect your punctuation, or reword sentences.

Writers who use QuillBot find there are no problems with their writing by the time they’re done with it!

What is the difference between there, their, and they're?

Writers and speakers use there to show where something or someone is or to show that it exists. They use their to show that an object or person belongs to or is related to another object or person. They’re is used in place of “they are.”

Is it their are or there are?

The correct phrase is there are because their shows possession, while there shows location or existence.

How do you use they're in a sentence?

They’re is a contraction of they are, so use it in any place you would say they are. Here’s an example: Itzhak wants his classmates to read his work, but they’re already reading another paper.


Hannah Skaggs

Along with Paige Pfeifer

Hannah, a writer and editor since 2017, specializes in clear and concise academic and business writing. She has mentored countless scholars and companies in writing authoritative and engaging content.

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