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# A 2009 study from the California State Housing Authority concluded

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Magoosh GMAT Instructor
Joined: 28 Dec 2011
Posts: 4471
Re: A 2009 study from the California State Housing Authority concluded  [#permalink]

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12 Jun 2017, 11:54
shonikjk wrote:
Hi egmat mikemcgarry,

Can anyone help me understand why is "which" wrong in option C? As posted above, Veritas prep solution says " In (C) the incorrect “which” clause would mean that all townhouses and “attached” homes are small and old". I don't quite understand this.

Also, I spent a lot of time figuring out what does that and which refer to? Do they refer to both townhomes and "attached homes" or just the "attached homes"? Pleas ehelp understand the concept behind these.

Dear shonikjk,

I'm happy to respond.

Here's the OA version, (D):
A 2009 study from the California State Housing Authority concluded that conversion from ownership to rental properties has often been difficult: It has been more common for some townhouses and other “attached” homes that are relatively small and old and located in central cities.

First of all, remember that the GMAT SC is NOT simply a test a grammar. The GMAT SC tests grammar, logic, and rhetoric all at once, and it punishes students who pay attention only to grammar.

An important point of logic--whenever a sentence is talking about "A and other B," explicitly calling A a kind of B, then the author has created a strong logical link between A and B. Unless there is another structure that that creates contrast between A & B elsewhere in the sentence, we have to assume that the other intends to treat them as a single unit. Here, it's unambiguous that the author intends to discuss "townhouses and other “attached” homes" as a single category.

Notice, also, the correct term in English is "townhouses." The term "townhomes" makes no sense to native ears. The term "house" connotes anything about the physical building, where as "home" has all the connotation of family, connection, and belonging.

In (C), it's not so much that the "which" itself is wrong. Instead, it's the choppy nature of the modifier. There are three qualities of these houses that are being enumerated: (1) small, (2) old, (3) located in central cities. It makes the most logical sense to put these three in parallel, as they are in the OA, (D). Choice (C) puts two in parallel inside the "which" clause and the third sticks out like a sore thumb. Very awkward.

Does all this make sense?
Mike
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Mike McGarry
Magoosh Test Prep

Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire. — William Butler Yeats (1865 – 1939)
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Re: A 2009 study from the California State Housing Authority concluded  [#permalink]

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10 Dec 2017, 19:20
C is out b/c of "which"
A is out b/c A is a run-on sentence.
Basically, B and D have the same meaning, but B has an ambiguous pronoun "that", the second one.
E is no better than A.
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Re: A 2009 study from the California State Housing Authority concluded  [#permalink]

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11 Aug 2019, 16:04
Official explanation:

Solution: D

Explanation: The most obvious decision point in this problem is the choice of between a semi-colon and a colon. Interestingly, you could have either here: A semi-colon is used to link together related independent clauses and a colon is used to deliver more information about the clause that precedes it. This meets both conditions, but the colon use is more unusual for most students. (A), (B), (C), all suffer from errors in the series at the end of the sentence.
In (A), “that are relatively small and old, located in central cities” is wrong because the “located in central cities” is a dangling modifier that cannot be properly linked to anything.
In (B), you cannot have the structure: that are x, y, and that are z.
In (C) the incorrect “which” clause would mean that all townhouses and “attached” homes are small and old and the “and located in central cities” is not linked to anything logical in the sentence.
(D) is correct: the sentence after the colon is complete so it is capitalized and adds information to what precedes it. It is clear in (D) that the homes have two qualities: they are “relatively small and old” and “located in central cities.”
In (E), the “and located in central cities” is improperly separated from a series that begins with “that”.

Re: A 2009 study from the California State Housing Authority concluded   [#permalink] 11 Aug 2019, 16:04

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