Afford

  • Macsito

    Senior Member
    US
    French - France
    Which manner is the appropiate one?

    AFFORD ----> TO + INFINITIVE VERB :tick:
    or
    AFFORD-----> VERB + ING :cross:

    As far as I know...
     

    daviesri

    Senior Member
    USA English
    Both are appropriate if used in the proper context.

    We are not able to afford a new car at this time.
    I cannot see myself affording a new car anytime soon.
     

    papa majada

    Senior Member
    English U.S. - Español Nuyorican/Ibérico
    Hi there:
    I believe the question was about verbs following "afford." Verbs that follow "afford" are always infinitive.
    ex: We can't afford to buy a new car
    Ciao
     

    Macsito

    Senior Member
    US
    French - France
    I understood the question as "verbs following afford" as papa majada says, this is why I crossed out the "ing" one.
     

    deslenguada

    Senior Member
    Castellano
    But I guess many people tend to say "AFFORD +VERB+ ING" don't they? That's why I wondered which is way is the right one.
     

    fenixpollo

    moderator
    American English
    They can't afford this car (noun)= They can't afford buying this car (gerund).
    This sentence doesn't sound right to me.
    DL said:
    But I guess many people tend to say "AFFORD +VERB+ ING" don't they?
    I don't think so. As far as I can tell: unless it's in the context that davriesi provided, "afford" and "-ing" are not used together.
     

    cuchuflete

    Senior Member
    EEUU-inglés
    But I guess many people tend to say "AFFORD +VERB+ ING" don't they? That's why I wondered which is way is the right one.

    Why do you guess this? It may be said once in a while, but, in addition to being wrong, it is not common.

    I cannot afford to go skiing often. :tick:

    I can't afford skiing. Skiing is not a verb in this construction.

    Your VERB + ING is ambiguous, as it allows for both present participles and gerunds. Only one is a verb form.
     

    panjandrum

    Lapsed Moderator
    English-Ireland (top end)
    I really don't think we afford gerunds in BE.
    It sounds really strange.
    There is only one example in the British National Corpus, 1621 with the infinitive.
     

    deslenguada

    Senior Member
    Castellano
    Could we go back to the thread issue?

    My conclusions by now are that people sometimes use gerund after a verb instead a noun or an infinitive verb, which is the correct, because some nouns are made of a gerund verb, that's why the conffusion. Am I right?
    Thank you.
     

    gaer

    Senior Member
    US-English
    Could we go back to the thread issue?

    My conclusions by now are that people sometimes use gerund after a verb instead a noun or an infinitive verb, which is the correct, because some nouns are made of a gerund verb, that's why the conffusion. Am I right?
    Thank you.
    In spite of the site name "Ciao", I would insist that this is 100% normal for AE:

    Buying A New Car > Reviews > I wish I could afford buying one every week...

    link

    I would prefer "afford to buy", and I'm making no statements about correctness. I'll let the rest of you argue the grammatical merits. However, I'm sure I've heard it. I'm also not sure I would not say it myself. I don't think this usage is "foreign". It might be strange to ears used to BE.

    I don't think I would write "afford + very+ing". ;)
     

    deslenguada

    Senior Member
    Castellano
    I don't think this usage is "foreign". ;)
    Not at all, I've heard it from native speakers, that's why I was surprise when at class the teacher corrected an exercise and it was "affor to infinitive verb" but the folllowing day she corrected another one and she said it was "afford ver + ing", then I asked her and we both got very confussed about the issue and she consulted her grammar books and she told me the correct way was "afford to + infinitive verb" but we still were in doubt because we both were sure we have heard native speakers say it. That's why I opened this thread. ;)
     

    deslenguada

    Senior Member
    Castellano
    No, deslenguada,
    The problem is some verbs only require infinitives, some only take gerunds, some go with both - and it's not easy to remember.
    So from your words I understand that sometimes it can be "afford + infinitive verb" and sometimes "afford + gerund verb" depending on the following verb? :confused: Why is it? Could you give me som examples please?
     

    gaer

    Senior Member
    US-English
    Not at all, I've heard it from native speakers, that's why I was surprise when at class the teacher corrected an exercise and it was "affor to infinitive verb" but the folllowing day she corrected another one and she said it was "afford ver + ing", then I asked her and we both got very confussed about the issue and she consulted her grammar books and she told me the correct way was "afford to + infinitive verb" but we still were in doubt because we both were sure we have heard native speakers say it. That's why I opened this thread. ;)
    We have no reliable information yet that only one of the two possibilities you mentioned is correct.

    I am also frustrated at the lack of responses to your original question. I think the whole discussion has gone way off topic. :)

    Gaer
     

    panjandrum

    Lapsed Moderator
    English-Ireland (top end)
    Closed for a few moments of deep thought.
    Normal service will be resumed as soon as possible.


    Thread re-opened for business.
    The interesting discussion on grammatical principles has been removed from this thread and re-housed in:
    Verbs + nouns, gerunds and infinitives.


    Back in post #10 I rather cryptically reported that the British National Corpus - a repository of spoken and written British English - includes one single example of afford verbing, compared with 1,621 examples of afford to verb.
    That suggests very strongly that in BE afford + gerund is unusual.
     

    gaer

    Senior Member
    US-English
    Closed for a few moments of deep thought.
    Normal service will be resumed as soon as possible.


    Thread re-opened for business.
    Back in post #10 I rather cryptically reported that the British National Corpus - a repository of spoken and written British English - includes one single example of afford + gerund, compared with 1,621 examples of afford + verbing.

    That suggests very strongly that in BE afford + gerund is unusual.
    That's the kind of info I believe we were all looking for.

    My guess is that the alternate is AE and probably either incorrect, slang or informal. ;)
     

    gaer

    Senior Member
    US-English
    I still wonder about "afford + gerund verb".
    Results 1 - 10 of about 224 for "I can't afford buying".
    Results 1 - 10 of about 96,700 for "I can't afford to buy". :tick:

    Results 1 - 4 of about 5 for "I can't afford doing that".
    Results 1 - 10 of about 9,170 for "I can't afford to do that". :tick:

    I think this is pretty clear. Common usage matches what is said to be grammatically correct.

    My question is related to yours, I think.

    I can't avoid doing it. :tick:
    I can't avoid to do it. WRONG!

    I hate/love reading these messages. :tick:
    I hate/love to read these messages. :tick:

    Why do some verbs use only one form while others use both? I do not know!
     

    deslenguada

    Senior Member
    Castellano
    Ok, let's try to finish this thread, I have no problem with "avoid,love, hate like" etc my little "problem" is related to "afford"
    I see the best and the right way is to say "afford + infinitve verb" so we could say that people who say so are wrong because they get confussed about what is a verb or a noun in this particular case, or could it even be considered slang?
    Thank you.
     

    Lucretia

    Senior Member
    Russian
    Thank you, Panj. BNC is a great thing.
    Hola, Deslenguada,
    You misunderstood me. What I meant was that after some verbs we use only gerunds, never infinitives, etc. For example:
    Avoid – only gerund
    I avoided mentioning his name ( not to mention)
    Demand – only infinitive
    Panj demanded to keep to the subject ( not keeping to the subject).
    Start – either gerund or infinitive.
    I started reading. I started to read.
    In my list from a grammar book afford belongs to the 2nd group – it only takes the infinitive.
    Best wishes
     

    Lucretia

    Senior Member
    Russian
    We're only talking about the Infinitive vs the Gerund here, gaer. Your sentence is sure OK, but it's just off the subject.
    Or do you mean an infinitive after demand is impossible? That's another thing. I took demand from my grammar book, within the only infinitive group.
    Why, isn't He demanded to know... correct?
     

    panjandrum

    Lapsed Moderator
    English-Ireland (top end)
    [...]
    Demand – only infinitive
    Panj demanded to keep to the subject ( not keeping to the subject).
    [...]
    [...]That sounds very odd to me. I would write:

    Panj demanded that we keep to the subject. :)
    [...]
    Your sentence is sure OK, but it's just off the subject.
    Or do you mean an infinitive after demand is impossible? That's another thing.
    I took demand from my grammar book, within the only infinitive group.
    Why, isn't He demanded to know... correct?
    Of course "He demanded to know ..." is correct, but that is not the example that you used above.

    Your post stated:
    Demand – only infinitive
    Panj demanded to keep to the subject ( not keeping to the subject).
    This, as gaer has pointed out, sounds very odd - very odd indeed - to the extent that I would say it is wrong.

    For the correct version, see gaer's post as quoted above.

    However, as deslenguada has patiently pointed out, this thread is about afford. There is another thread, linked earlier, where you are free to continue a more general philosophical discussion.
     

    deslenguada

    Senior Member
    Castellano
    Lucretia, Gaer thank you for your help but my "problem" is with "afford" I understand that come verbs take the infinitive mood and other the gerund mood, sometime both, and sometimes both mean the same and sometime not exactly the same, I do understand that. Wher I started this thread I was conffused about it but only with the veb "afford" because I thought it could take both forms and mean the same thing, but at the same time I knew one was wrong and I pressumably assumed it was the gerund one, anyways I asked because I was sure I've heard it before, since I asked and you answered me I know those aren't gerunds, are nouns, since I've heard "afford" used with "gerund nouns" (if I can call them that way) that's the key for my missunderstanding.

    Anyways what I wonder now is if natives speakers happen to ocurr the same mistake.

    Thank you for your kind help ;)
     

    gaer

    Senior Member
    US-English
    Lucretia, Gaer thank you for your help but my "problem" is with "afford".
    I understand, and I tried to answer your question. :)

    My other responses, if they appeared to be off-topic, were aimed at showing that there do not appear to be any logical rules showing which verbs are followed by one form or another. I'm trying to stay away from labels and stick to examples.

    Let's examine this first:

    1 a : to manage to bear without serious detriment <you can't afford to neglect your health

    link

    Unfortunately, this definition does not help me. I already know what "afford" means in such a sentence, but I'm not sure that "to manage to bear without serious detriment" would help me if I did not understand the meaning. In addition, there does not seem to be any word we can use as a synonym:

    "you can't ____ to neglect your health"

    No matter what you use there in place of "afford", it is going to change the grammar.

    "you can't take a chance on neglecting your health"
    "you can't take the chance of neglecting your health"
    "you can't risk neglecting your health"
    "you don't dare neglect your health"

    In my opinion "afford to" is idiomatic. The questions that remain unanswered are these:

    1) How many people use sentences such as this:

    "I can't afford doing that."

    2) Is the "afford doing" choice linked to region? Educational background? Formality? Country? Other factors?

    My own vote is for "afford to + verb".

    I suspect most grammars will consider "afford + verb +ing" as wrong.

    Unfortunately, now that we have talked about it so much, I'm no longer sure of what I say in all situations. I used to write almost exactly the same way that I speak, but since spending so much time in this forum I have become much more self-conscious. :)

    Gaer
     

    deslenguada

    Senior Member
    Castellano
    Thaks Gaer.

    May I correct you something I think is wrong?

    "you don't dare neglect your health" , I think it's wrong, it should be either:
    "you do not dare to neglect your health" or
    "you dare not neglect your health" isn't it? Am I wrog?
     

    gaer

    Senior Member
    US-English
    Thaks Gaer.

    May I correct you something I think is wrong?

    "you don't dare neglect your health" , I think it's wrong, it should be either:
    This is really hard, and I think it should go in a new topic.

    However, Google these phrases:

    "you don't dare"
    "you don't dare to"

    I think you will find that a verb usually follows "dare" with no "to".
    "you do not dare to neglect your health" or
    This sounds wrong.
    "you dare not neglect your health" isn't it? Am I wrog?
    This sounds correct to me. :)
     

    DonnyB

    Sixties Mod
    English UK Southern Standard English
    May I ask you all about what in particular makes 'I can't afford buying a car' 'wrong'?
    Basically, it's because it is not what people (in my experience as a BE speaker, at least) normally say. The meaning is fairly obvious, but an idiomatic version would be either "I can't afford to buy a car" or "I can't afford a car".
     

    Retired-teacher

    Senior Member
    British English
    Many threads have OP's saying "but I've heard native speakers say that".

    It needs repeating again and again. Native speakers do not always use their own language correctly.
     

    velisarius

    Senior Member
    British English (Sussex)

    [...]
    Back in post #10 I rather cryptically reported that the British National Corpus - a repository of spoken and written British English - includes one single example of afford verbing, compared with 1,621 examples of afford to verb.
    That suggests very strongly that in BE afford + gerund is unusual.
    It looks very unusual to me. I'd always use "I can/can't afford to..."
     

    Enquiring Mind

    Senior Member
    English - the Queen's
    Same here: it's afford to in BE, though it does seem that there may be a slight difference between AE and BE. In the AE Ngram here, "cannot afford buying" does actually register, thought it's way behind "cannot afford to buy". In the BE Ngram here, "cannot afford buying" doesn't register at all.
     
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