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it's or its

Question: When do we use it’s, and when do we use its?

When we mean it is or it has, we use it’s. (Contraction)

  • It’s a beautiful day. (It is)
  • It’s been raining all day. (It has)
  • Sometimes it’s hard to get up in the morning. (It is)

When we talk about something that belongs to it, we use its. (Possessive: Its challenge).

  • The documentary discusses Japan and its temples.
  • The computer is broken.  Its hard-drive does not work.
  • A new bank has been started in the community.  Its services include free checking and online banking.

Richard Carrigan, MSE

Richard Carrigan has been an educator for over 30 years and a filmmaker for the past ten years. He has experience teaching English as a Second Language in Asia and teaching university students in the United States. He earned his undergraduate degree from Loma Linda University and his graduate degree from Shenandoah University.