According to Michael Swan's Practical English Usage, it is possible to use since without perfect tenses in the main clause, especially in sentences about change. The examples given are:

  1. You're looking much better since your operation.
  1. She doesn't come round to see us so much since her marriage.
  1. Since last Sunday I can't stop thinking about you.
  1. Things weren't going so well since Father's illness.

I'm unable to understand this rule well enough. What about these sentences:

  • I'm living at my friend's house since last Sunday. (= I lived somewhere else before Sunday but now I live with my friend, which is a change).
  • Since coming to London, I play a lot of Cricket (I didn't play much Cricket before coming to London but now I play a lot).
  • I know her since last year (I didn't know her before last year but now I do).*

Are these sentences also correct?

1 Answer 1


Of your suggestions, I think only the second is both grammatically valid and natural.

"I'm living" is the present tense, but that doesn't work well with "since". I think this should be:

I have been living at my friend's house since last Sunday.

"I know her" similarly does not work with since. I think this should be:

I have known her since last year.

I find it hard to formulate a general rule that covers all these examples.

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