He lives on the top floor of our building ?
He lives on the top floor in our building ?

Which is the correct preposition?


Both are grammatical and the usage seems to depend somewhat on where the (native) speaker is from, with "of the building" seeming to be more common in American English and "in the building" winning out in Australian English.

For context, "top floor of the building" gets 9.5 million hits on google.com.au and whereas "top floor in the building" gets 47 million. Using google.com (not the Australian version), "in the building" gets just under 2 million, while the result for "of the building" stays the same.

  • 2
    Be very wary of using ghits to measure prevalence. Google is always changing its index and its algorithms, and the results it delivers are increasingly localized. More reliable comparisons can be obtained from corpora such as hosted at corpus.byu.edu and natcorp.ox.ac.uk . – choster Oct 15 '14 at 14:44
  • This answer is misleading. – user3395 Jun 3 '17 at 14:01

He lives on the top floor "of" our building is the correct usage.

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