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Difference between "Help in buying" and "help to buy"

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Difference between "Help in buying" and "help to buy"  [#permalink]

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New post 07 Jan 2019, 19:06
Hi GMATNinja AjiteshArun generis GMATNinjaTwo

Can you please explain the difference between "Help in buying" and "help to buy".

I, at times, get stuck when answering questions testing this concept.

Regards
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Re: Difference between "Help in buying" and "help to buy"  [#permalink]

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New post 16 Jan 2019, 05:57
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warrior1991 wrote:
Hi

Can you please explain the difference between "Help in buying" and "help to buy".

I, at times, get stuck when answering questions testing this concept.

Regards




As per my knowledge, Grammatically, these are both correct.


Generally, In 'help in buying', help is a GERUND ie a noun and 'in buying' modifies it.
Whereas, in 'help to buy' help is a verb.

There might be some special cases too.

Let me know, it the answer was helpful.

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Re: Difference between "Help in buying" and "help to buy"  [#permalink]

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New post 17 Jan 2019, 14:13
warrior1991 wrote:
Hi GMATNinja AjiteshArun generis GMATNinjaTwo

Can you please explain the difference between "Help in buying" and "help to buy".

I, at times, get stuck when answering questions testing this concept.

Regards

Honestly, this is an obscure idiom that I wouldn't devote much brain space to, but if you're curious, the correct usage comes down to whether "help" is used as a noun or verb, as others have noted.

If I'm using "help" as a noun, the following construction is fine: "I offered help to my friend Dan, who needed someone to watch his children while he gambled away the savings he planned to use for their college tuition." Here, we have HELP (noun) + TO + NOUN. Perfectly okay. We could also write, "He asked for help with raising his children." This also seems fine. In this case, the construction is HELP (noun)+ PREPOSITION + VERB-ING.

If I'm using "help" as a verb, I could pair it with an infinitive or a noun. For example, "Dana helped to secure financing for the merger that would, in time, destroy the country's economy." So HELP (verb) + INFINITIVE is also fair game.

What the GMAT doesn't seem to like, is a construction such as, "I offered help to raise Dan's kids." In other words HELP (noun)+ INFINITIVE is no good. It's not entirely clear if this is a definitive grammar issue, or if the problem is that once I see HELP + TO, I'm expecting to see a noun, and so have to reread the phrase a couple of times to wrap my mind around what the writer hopes to convey.

But again, idioms should not be a priority for you. Virtually every time we see an official question in which an idiom serves as a primary decision point, it's an older, long-retired problem. So if you find yourself stuck on an idiom, look for more concrete issues to eliminate answer choices. More on all of that in this article.

I hope that helps!
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Re: Difference between "Help in buying" and "help to buy"   [#permalink] 17 Jan 2019, 14:13
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