Could you tell me which one of the following sentences is correct, and why? Or are both correct or both incorrect? If the answer is yes, then please correct me.

  1. She is the reason why I could afford this.
  2. She is the reason why I am able to afford this.
  • Hi @Abaninda and welcome to the site. It is a good idea on a site about proper English usage to use full words and your best attempt at grammar, capitalization and punctuation (we realise you are learning of course). So, avoid 'plz', 'i', etc. I have edited to correct the contractions, etc.
    – fred2
    Commented Mar 17, 2019 at 17:44

1 Answer 1


Either is correct, and the meaning is much the same. The use of "could" in this construction implies the immediate past, perhaps only a few minutes ago, while "am able" implies the present or immediate future, but "could" might well be used here for the present. "Could" suggests considering a different possibility where the person could not afford whatever it is. Both are probably using "She" to stand for whatever it is that "she" did -- provided money or resources perhaps, or relieved the speaker of a debt, or co-signed a loan, or arranged for a price reduction. In some way 'she' changes things so that what would not otherwise have been affordable became so, and that action is truly "the reason". "She" is used to stand for "her action".

The form with "could" is a bit more informal (because shorter by a syllable) and would be more commonly used in everyday dialog.

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