The English language is filled with various verb tenses, and the Future Perfect is one of them. It is usually used to indicate that an action will have been completed at some point in the future. To understand this tense properly, we need to delve into its structure, usage, and various forms. By the end of this tutorial, you'll be fully equipped to use the Future Perfect Tense accurately and confidently.
The Future Perfect Tense consists of two components: the future simple of the verb 'to have' (will have) and the past participle of the main verb. The structure of the tense varies a little depending on whether you're forming a positive sentence, a negative sentence, or a question.
For positive sentences, the structure is: 'Subject + will have + past participle of the main verb'
- "By the end of this year, I will have graduated from college."
- "She will have finished her assignment by tomorrow."
For negative sentences, the structure is: 'Subject + will not have/'won't have' + past participle of the main verb'
- "I won't have finished my project by tomorrow."
- "They will not have arrived by 8 pm."
For questions, the structure is: 'Will + subject + have + past participle of the main verb?'
- "Will you have completed the report by this evening?"
- "Will she have left by the time I get home?"
Let's look at the situations where this tense is commonly used:
To Show an Action will be Completed before Another Future Action or Time
We use the Future Perfect Tense to show that an action will be finished before another action in the future or a specific time in the future.
- "He will have finished his homework by the time his favorite TV show starts."
- "By next December, we will have been married for five years."
With 'By' and 'By The Time'
The Future Perfect is often used with 'by' or 'by the time'. 'By means 'at the latest before' a certain moment, and 'by the time' means 'when' or 'at the point when'.
- "By next Monday, Susan will have begun her new job."
- "By the time you arrive, the concert will have started."
The Future Perfect Tense does not have a continuous form because when we talk about completed future actions or events, we are always referring to an action that has finished. In other words, it is a 'simple' tense.
In the Future Perfect Tense, remember to use 'have' after 'will' regardless of the subject. Even when the subject is 'he', 'she', or 'it', never use 'has'. If you do, the sentence will become incorrect. For instance, "She will has completed the project by tomorrow." would be incorrect; the right sentence would be "She will have completed the project by tomorrow."
The Future Perfect Tense may seem a bit intimidating at first, due to its structure and uses. Nevertheless, with practice and close attention to its particular rules, it can become an integral part of your language toolbox, enabling you to express complex timings and interactions of future events. As with any aspect of language learning, the key with the Future Perfect Tense is to keep practicing!