Unit 4.1

Future Perfect Continuous


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Introduction

Future perfect continuous  is the tense used to talk about a continuous action that will be completed at some point in the future. It is often used with time expressions.

Form

Future perfect continuous has these three forms: affirmative, negative and interrogative.

Affirmative

Its structure, in the affirmative form, is:
Subject + will + have + been + [verb + -ing] + …

SUBJECT FUTURE SIMPLE AUXILIARY VERB BEEN PRESENT PARTICIPLE
I/You/He/She/It/We/You/They  will have been walking

Negative

Its full structure, in the negative form, is:
Subject + will not + have + been + [verb + -ing] + …

Negative short form is won’t:
Subject + won’t + have + been + [verb + -ing] + …

SUBJECT FUTURE SIMPLE + NOT AUXILIARY VERB BEEN PRESENT PARTICIPLE
I/You/He/She/It/We/You/They will not/
won’t
have been walking

Interrogative

Its structure, in the interrogative form, is:
Will + Subject + have + been + [verb + -ing] + …?

FUTURE SIMPLE SUBJECT AUXILIARY VERB BEEN PRESENT PARTICIPLE QUESTION MARK
Will I/You/He/She/It/We/You/They have been walking ?

Example

  • won’t have been investing in architecture by the end of 2020.
  • The company will have been already trading for 2 weeks after the new manager’s arrival.
  • After the new manager arrival, the company still won’t have been trading.
  • Will the company have been trading for 2 weeks after the new manager arrival?
  • They will have been negotiating for 3 years this summer.

Use

We use future perfect continuous to talk about a continuous action that will be completed at some point in the future.

We can use time expressions such as for two minutes, for 5 years, since Saturday… 

We can also use future perfect continuous to show the relation of cause and effect.

Summary

We use future perfect continuous to talk about a continuous action that will be completed at some point in the future and to show the relation of cause and effect.

We can use it in its different forms:

  • affirmative: we start with the subject followed by will have been and a verb that ends with -ing;
  • negative: we start with the subject followed by will not have been and a verb that ends with -ing;
  • interrogative: we start with will followed by the subject followed by have been and the a verb that ends with -ing (the sentence ends with a question mark).

We can use time expressions such as: for 5 years, since Saturday… 

For example:

— affirmative: I will have been working with you for 3 years next week.” 
— negative: “I will not have been working with you for 3 years next week.”
— interrogative: Will I have been working with you for 3 years next week?
We use the future perfect continuous because the action of working for 3 years will (or will not) be completed in the future, meaning next week.
“I will be working next week.” = We use the future continuous because we assume that this event will be taking place in the future.
“I will work next week.” = We use the future simple because we express a future intention.

Let’s revise this content within the {Form} section. Take a look at the {Example} section that shows its use within a context.

Exercises

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