Choose the correct answers:
- If I __________ (was, were, had been) you, I would not plan to move to Florida.
- Sergey would also advise you to stay in Chicago if he _________ (was, were, had been) your brother.
- If Sergey and I __________ (was, were, had been) your neighbors last year, we would have helped you deal with the house issues.
All these three sentences express unreal, imagined, or wishful scenarios.
present unreal situation: simple past tense verb in “if” clause
past unreal situation: past perfect tense verb in “if” clause
If the verb in the “if” clause is a “Be” verb, then “were” or “had been” is the choice, even when the subject is “I/he/she/it”. In conversations, it is common to hear people say “was” instead of “were”, but “were” should be used in formal situations.
“If I were you…” is a common and gentle way to give advice.
- In Sentence #1, use simple past verb “were” in the present unreal situation because I am not you.
- In Sentence #2, use simple past verb “were” in the present unreal situation because Sergey is not your brother.
- In Sentence #3, use past perfect verb in the past unreal situation because Sergey and I were not your neighbors last year.
- I am taking a quiz now, but I would be happier if I __________ (was, were, had been) at the beach.
- If there __________ (was not, were not, had not been) so much noise outside the classroom at the moment, I would be able to focus on my quiz better.
- If I __________ (was, were, had been) free yesterday, I would have gone to the beach instead of preparing for the quiz.
were; were; had been
were; were not; had been