Conditional Sentences

Conditional sentences
There are two types of conditional sentences: real situations and hypothetical ones. In order to get these down, you’ll need to have a firm grip of the present indicative, the future tense, the conditional tense, and the imperfect subjunctive. If you learn this basic formula, then you should be set.

If… then…
Present time Present Indicative Future
Si tú comes  no tendrás hambre.
If you eat…  you won´t be hungry.
Imperfect Subjunctive Conditional/Imperfect Subjunctive
Si tú comieras  no tendrías / tuvieras hambre
If you ate…  you wouldn’t be hungry.
Past Time Past Perfect Subjunctive Conditional Perfect / Past Perf. Subj.
Si tú hubieras comido  no habrías/hubieras tenido   hambre
If you had eaten…  you would not have been hungry.

Here are a few more examples:
Si yo tuviera más tiempo, trabajaría (trabajara) más de voluntario. If I had more time, I would do more volunteer work. (The implication is that I don’t and probably won’t have more time)

Si yo tengo más tiempo, trabajaré más de voluntario. If I have more time, I will do more volunteer work. (The implication is that it is a real possibility that I will have more time at some point.)

Si estudiamos, sacaremos buenas notas. If we study, we will get good good grades.
Si estudiáramos, sacaríamos (sacáramos) buenas notas. If we studied, we would get good grades.

Keep in mind that the order of the clauses doesn’t matter. For example, you could rephrase the sentences above as follows:

Sacaremos buenas notas si estudiamos.
Sacaríamos (Sacáramos) buenas notas si estudiáramos.

Practice Exercise 1

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