Copyright

Time Expressions in Spanish with Hacer

An error occurred trying to load this video.

Try refreshing the page, or contact customer support.

Coming up next: Spanish Reading Practice: Opening a New Salon

You're on a roll. Keep up the good work!

Take Quiz Watch Next Lesson
 Replay
Your next lesson will play in 10 seconds
  • 0:00 Hacer and Time
  • 0:24 Hacer and the Present Tense
  • 3:33 Hacer and the Preteriite Tense
  • 4:54 Hacer and the Imperfect Tense
  • 5:50 Lesson Summary
Save Save Save

Want to watch this again later?

Log in or sign up to add this lesson to a Custom Course.

Log in or Sign up

Timeline
Autoplay
Autoplay
Speed Speed

Recommended Lessons and Courses for You

Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Yolanda Reinoso Barzallo

Yolanda holds a CELTA Cambridge, a Juris Doctorate, and a Master of Public Administration. She is a published author of fiction in Spanish.

This Spanish lesson explores the use of 'hacer' to make statements about a time when an action occurs and to ask questions about it. In this lesson, we'll explore each time expression with 'hacer' in a formula that you can easily memorize.

Hacer and Time

The verb hacer, meaning 'to do' or 'to make' and pronounced ah-sehr, has a completely different meaning when Spanish speakers use it to make time statements. The meaning can either be 'ago' or 'for.' Given that hacer and time are combined with some tenses, you would have to check on verb conjugation.

Hacer and the Present Tense

To express actions that began at a specific time and continue in the present, follow this formula:

hace + length of time + que + verb in the present tense

To illustrate the use of this formula, you would have sentences like the following:

  • Hace un año que vivo en este apartamento. (I've been living in this apartment for a year.)
  • Hace dos meses que trabajo aquí. (I've been working here for two months.)
  • Hace dos horas que intento contactar a Juan. (I've been trying to contact Juan for two hours.)

To make a negative statement, all you have to do is add the word no in front of the verb in the present tense. Thus, the formula would be:

hace + length of time + que + no + verb in the present tense

To illustrate the use of this formula, you would have sentences like the following:

  • Hace dos años que no practico deportes. (I haven't practiced sports in two years.)
  • Hace seis semanas que no hablo con mi hermano. (I haven't talked to my brother in six weeks.)
  • Hace cinco días que no recibo mensajes de Patricia. (I haven't received any messages from Patricia in five days.)
  • Hace dos horas que no contestan. (It has been two hours that they do not answer.)

To ask questions using 'for how long have you. . .' follow this formula:

¿Hace cuánto + que + verb in the present tense?

Let's illustrate the use of this formula:

  • ¿Hace cuánto que vives en este apartamento? (For how long have you been living in this apartment?)
  • ¿Hace cuánto que trabajas aquí? (For how long have you been working here?)
  • ¿Hace cuánto que intentas contactar a Juan? (For how long have you been trying to contact Juan?)

To ask a question with a negative expression, all you have to do is add the word no in front of the verb in the present tense. Thus, the formula would be:

¿Hace cuánto + que + no + verb in the present tense?

To illustrate the use of this formula, you would have this question:

  • ¿Hace cuánto que no practicas deportes? (For how long haven't you practiced any sports?)

To use hacer with the present tense, you also have another alternative. The formula is:

present tense + desde hace + length of time

To illustrate the use of this formula, you would have sentences like the following:

  • Vivo en este apartamento desde hace un año. (I've been living in this apartment for a year.)
  • Trabajo aquí desde hace dos meses. (I've been working here for two months.)

To ask a question, the formula is as follows:

¿Desde hace cuánto + verb in the present tense?

To illustrate the use of this formula, you would have this question:

  • ¿Desde hace cuánto vives en este apartamento?

Hacer and the Preterite Tense

To express actions that occurred a time ago, use this formula:

hace + length of time + verb in the preterite tense

To illustrate the use of this formula, you would have sentences like the following:

To unlock this lesson you must be a Study.com Member.
Create your account

Register to view this lesson

Are you a student or a teacher?

Unlock Your Education

See for yourself why 30 million people use Study.com

Become a Study.com member and start learning now.
Become a Member  Back
What teachers are saying about Study.com
Try it risk-free for 30 days

Earning College Credit

Did you know… We have over 200 college courses that prepare you to earn credit by exam that is accepted by over 1,500 colleges and universities. You can test out of the first two years of college and save thousands off your degree. Anyone can earn credit-by-exam regardless of age or education level.

To learn more, visit our Earning Credit Page

Transferring credit to the school of your choice

Not sure what college you want to attend yet? Study.com has thousands of articles about every imaginable degree, area of study and career path that can help you find the school that's right for you.

Create an account to start this course today
Try it risk-free for 30 days!
Create an account
Support