My TOEFL students mix up these three words all the time!  Here’s what you need to know:

Resident” = a person.  For example:

  • “The residents of this city are really happy to live here.”
  • “There were enough fireplaces for about 15 residents.”
  • “Michael is a resident of Halifax.”


Residence” = a place where someone lives (like a home). For example:

  • “The houses in the Chaco Canyon were probably residences.”
  • “There are over five thousand residences in downtown Seattle.”


Residential” = an adjective with a meaning like “related to residences.”  For example:

  • “They look like the residential buildings in New Mexico.”
  • “This is a residential neighborhood.”
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