"C'est une maison avec beaucoup de travaux à faire !"

Translation:This is a house with a lot of work to be done!

April 4, 2013

This discussion is locked.

  • 1451

My lazy house doesn't do any work at all. It just sits there.


Yes, I agree that this sentence sounds weird. It should be translated as "This is a house with a lot of work to be done"


In australian english we would say 'This is a house that needs a lot of work'.

Unless you're a real estate agent, in which case it would be described as a "renovator's delight"...


Yes, in the USA they would say "a handyman's special" or "looking for some tender care", lol.


UK: "great for a first-time buyer!"


I'd just call it a fixer upper.


"With much potential"... which really means not yet connected to a mains water supply.


Toronto : 'A Developers dream'


They say that in American English as well, but it wasn't correct because "need" wasn't there.


I thought the same but didn't trust DL, lol


That's what I wrote


A better way of saying the whole thing would be, Cette maison a besoin de beaucoup de travaux = This house needs a lot of work.


Oh yeah, I like that much better and would definitely prefer to say that. c:


Much better! Duo must be tired of all that work, it has just accepted travaille à faire (a slip of the tongue).


Why is "It is..." wrong ?


Yea, seems that's all I got wrong too. "It is..." instead of "This is..." got marked wrong :(. Would be great if someone could illuminate use plebians.


Yeah I reported that "It is" should be correct since it's not clear where the house is in relation to the speakers and how long they've been talking about said house, etc.


That is not the reason it should be correct. It should be correct because just like the other options, it is perfectly correct both as a translation and in making sense. I can imagine a conversation where someone asks about a house on the market and being told that the best way to describe it is "it is a house with a lot of work to be done". And the French translation for that is the given sentence.


I wrote, "It is a house with a lot of work to do," which was accepted. :: 27 June, 2018.


I put that and it was marked wrong. SRG.


That is because the house does not work. A person can have a lot of work to do. The house has a lot of work to be done.


I agree with you.


Could somebody explain why it is "de travaux" instead of "des travaux" here, please? As long as I know it's "de" only when the sentence is negative as in "je n'ai pas de lettres" or there is an adjective before the noun as in "de beaux yeux" but I can't find any info on this particular case.

  • 1014

You have to consider that here "a lot of" is translated by "beaucoup de".

Nous avons beaucoup de pommes = We have a lot of apples. Nous avons beaucoup de chance (singular, because it's general) = We have a lot of luck


This happens with any of the quantative adjectives, e.g. tellement de pommes, beaucoup d'oranges, plein de trucs.


Dear ferynn and lemmingofdestiny, thanks for the explanations!


  • 1014

BTW, you forgot one S to pommeS ;)


In a previous question "travaux" was used for repairs. Is that translation suitable here?

I wrote: it's a house with a lot of repairs to make. I know, the English is a bit clumsy.


Me too. I'm reporting it.


According to the "French Passive Infinitive" article on About.com, an infinitive preceded by à, as it is here, generally implies a passive meaning for the verb. Which would mean that the intended meaning of this sentence is "it is a house with a lot of work to be done," which makes perfect sense in English. Although it may not be the typical way we would say it, the meaning is the same, and you can't expect other languages to express ideas with the exact same syntax as you would use in your language, despite Duolingo's general insistence on literal translations.


Zdubien, I had no idea about the passive meaning "à" implies when used before an infinitive. I hope I remember that.

I am beginning to accept that some sentences in French have no way to be perfectly translated into English and I just have to grasp the meaning behind them and not worry too much about the English version. "Je me manque" seemed like something I would never be able to wrap my head around...but I am very comfortable with it now.

  • 1146

"Je me manque" is not liguistically as confusing as, say, "Je te manque", or "Paris me manque", but it is a little puzzling conceptually. Perhaps the speaker has undergone a massive trauma and will never be the same again, but misses the more carefree person she used to be? <g>


LOL! You gave me a lingot-worthy chuckle. I am not sure what I was thinking when I gave that example. I am not even sure what that means but your suggestion sounds very plausible. Only in my case, I cannot even use the excuse of a massive trauma for feeling that way. Perhaps I had taken leave of my senses and that was a Freudian slip. LOL!


Zdubien, Thanks for the fantastic explanation! The link you give has been changed; here is the new one:



well.. this sentence is pretty awkward to translate . and french is my mother tongue D:


This should be ''this house needs a lot of work'' -- if we are to use idiomatically correct translations.


Or, "This house needs lots of work" Certainly I would use this formation. My response to the translation "This is a house with lots of work to be done!" was rejected, with the reminder that I had used the plural "lots of' rather than "a lot". I guess I assumed that in this context 'a lot' = 'lots'.


Your first suggestion and mikehely's are translations for cette maison a besoin de beaucoup de travaux which was not the given exercise. No need to change the sentence structure from starting with "this is...".

Otherwise, your submission should have been accepted. Hope you reported it.


Why is "It is a house needing a lot of work!" rejected?


Why is "that is" not accepted?


I cannot think of any reason why it shouldn't be accepted. If you didn't report it this time, do so if you get another chance.


Thanks, on a hunch I did report it.


Still not accepted as a correct response 2 years later... Also reported it


Why "it is" is not accepted?


I cannot think of a good reason why it is not accepted either. George? Sitesurf?


Surely this should be acceptable?

It is a house with much work to be done.


how would you translate "it is a house with a lot of work to be done?"


The same way as the given sentence.


But it is not accepted!

[deactivated user]

    Why is "lots of work" incorrect? Because, in the literal sense, "beaucoup" means "a lot"? Also, would "much work to do" be an acceptable translation?


    does the translation make any sense? what does it mean?


    I assume it means the house is a fixer-upper. I could be wrong, though.


    it means: the house is in a bad condition, a lot of work needs to be done to make it a nice house


    But that's not what it actually says and it's not usual in English to have an inanimate object (in the case the house) doing something. A more correct form would be that which ThanKwee suggested above.


    A house can leak, let in the cold, make strange noises at night, fall down... It is perfectly normal in English for an inanimate object to do things.

    The usual way to express the meaning of this sentence in (European) English is 'This is a house that needs a lot of work'. Unfortunately this solution is not accepted, but I have reported it.


    The house is not doing something. It is having something done to it. Passive verb (à +infinitive). Good sentence.



    you are right, helenvee (and thankwee)


    Right, like the house my son has been working on for three years.


    Yes, a lot of contingences in the contract offer.


    This sentence doesn't work in English.


    It's a very common expression describing perhaps an old house for sale, so the whole phrase "with a lot of work to do" is adjectival. For example "It is eighty years old, partially modernised but still with a lot of work to do."


    I'm reading all these comments and hearing it's an awkward sentence in English. Sounds natural to me. Now I'm wondering if I say things improperly!


    Attempting to translate can be very difficult because of regional differences and disagreements as to correct grammar. I'm not always certain about some sentences, alas..

    • 1146

    Carina90 - the sentence sounds odd to me, too, as if the house itself had a "to do" list and needed to get on with it. I grew up in California and have lived all my adult life in British Columbia. I am curious to know where you are from, where this sentence sounds natural. (No judgement, just curiosity.)


    It is a house with a lot of work to do! is not an accepted translation. Why?


    Because that sounds as if the house will be the one doing the work not that it needs to be worked on, which is what the French sentence meant.


    I typed "It's a house with a lot of work to be done!" It was accepted. The passive construction in English is clunkier than the French (à + infinitive) but it gets the job done.


    Work was marked incorrect for me. The correction was "repairs" Work can mean repairs, renovations or just decorating and is the more natural term.


    American English uses "lots" in place of "a lot of". Why does Duo not accept this?


    I think it is because it is most informal. "A lot of" is less informal but not as proper as "plenty".


    Why can I not use "lots" instead of a "lot"? The feedback I got was-- You used the plural "lots" here, instead of the singular "lot". I am not sure what the difference is as I think we use "lots" and "a lot" interchangeably in English.


    I agree with you, but DL doesn't seem to be written by native American English speakers and has quite a few examples of sentences that would be acceptable but are marked wrong.


    A lot and lots are used interchangeably in UK English too


    It is true Duo has some errors, but you get what you pay for.

    There are native English speakers on Duo's team and together with learners, they are continually adding alternative answers as they are suggested or deemed necessary. So if you feel an answer you gave but was marked wrong should be accepted, go ahead and suggest it. The only reason I can see lots being rejected is if Duo deems it too informal.


    This, that , and it all need to be accepted, right? Also


    "It is" is still being marked wrong May 2018...how are we supposed to know it requires "This is" instead?


    Are you reporting it?


    Some of these exercises just require you to give the DL answer. As far as I can tell either should be accepted.


    "It is a house that needs a lot of work done" is the "correct" answer Duo gave me after marking "It is a house that needs a lot of work doing" wrong.

    I would not say the former but have said the latter many times....I think the second is more common in BritE.

    Please add it to the list Duo.

    Reported 18/02/18


    I put "The house is in need of a lot of work". Wrong! However, at least it is more accurate.


    That might have been accepted if you had said "This house is in need of a lot of work" or perhaps "This is a house which is in need of a lot of work".

    But I don't work on the incubator anymore. I'm just a moderator. N6zs works on the incubator, so it will be up to him to accept, or not accept your translation, or to explain why it will be accepted, or why it should not be accepted.


    Bonjour gitanes68, I agree , your sentence is a MUCH better translation than the one Duo provides, just need to change your "The house...." to "This is a house/It is a house...........'!\

    Hopefully Duo will accept your translation.


    "home" instead of "house" is not accepted, I am surprised :)


    Should "home" be accepted?


    I thought it should, maybe it is because of the fact that I do not know the exact difference of home and house.


    "Home" is one's place of residence, "house" is usually used about other people's homes. Hope that clarified it somewhat, msddk.


    Yes, a house is a physical structure -- usually standalone, unless it is attached, which case it would be a townhome/ row house but not a condo. A home could be an apartment, a houseboat, or a tent even. A home is anyplace when one lives. Even the homeless sleeping under a bridge would called that location their home so technically speaking they are not homeless but still needs a decent place to live.


    It's a fixer-upper!


    "Faire" already means "to do", so what is the purpose of the "a" before it?


    À + faire forms the passive voice. This means "to be done" rather than "to do".

    "It's a house with a lot of work to be done."



    Does in French verbs also have plural form or travail is not used as a verb here.


    Yes, 'travail/travaux' is a noun, not a verb 'travailler' which is spelled differently.


    THAT is a house....THAT also should work. Right?


    It rejected "it is a house with lots of work to do". Reported 26 April 2018.


    Of course it is rejected. The house does not have to do any work. That would be I with lots of work to do: laundry, dishes, dusting,...you name it!

    The house on the other hand has lots of work to be done (on it). The house itself doesn't have to do a thing.


    "There's lots of work to do with this house" would have the intended interpretation, but it has a different grammatical structure.


    Not "with this house". Perhaps "on this house" or "in this house".

    "With this house" makes it sound as if the house will be giving you a hand with some tasks.

    Also avoid using contractions on Duolingo. The program does not differentiate between "is" and "has" when contracted so will mark you wrong when you are right and right when you are wrong.


    It rejected "it is a house with a lot of work to be done". Reported 26 April 2018.


    Why not "it is a house...."


    "many repairs to be done "should be accepted as we would say that in the US


    The following was copied from ¨www.dictionary.cambridge.org¨website.In informal styles, we prefer to use lots of or a lot of:


    I don't think Duolingo is fond of informal styles. I think you would be better served to imagine the exercises as being part of academic writing and thus avoid contractions and informal usage. It is just less of a headache IMO.


    True. But you used the plural travaux and the lesson is about irregular plurals. This rather confused me.


    What exactly confused you?

    Were you answering someone? If you do not click on REPLY under the person you're responding to, then your post just appears out of place and so it's not clear what "True" refers to.


    I wrote: this is a house in which a lot of work is to be done I was told wrong. Why???


    I don't see how "travaux" is different from "travail" in this sentence. I mean, "work" isn't really a thing, so it shouldn't have a plural.


    In UK English there are many instances of the plural "works", the road works, or I had the whole works, the department of works, the water works,

    [deactivated user]

      Why not "To do" ? Thanks


      Because that would imply the house will be doing the work. I, a human being, have a lot of work to do on this house. The house itself has a lot of work to be done.

      [deactivated user]

        Ok. Very clear. Thank you.


        It sounds like ".....avec beaucoup du craveaux à faire"


        Is (C'est une maison avec beaucoup de TRAVAIL à faire) correct translation for (This is a house with a lot of work to be done) also


        "Many" is not accepted


        Because you only use "many" with countable nouns. For something like "work" you would have to use words like "a lot of", "plenty of", "much".


        31/03/2019 The literal translation "This is a house with a lot of work to do" is still accepted.

        From previous responses, I think people are mostly tripping up on this one through translating the -c'est- as "-it is- a house with a lot of work to do" or "-it is- a house with a lot of work to be done".


        I do not think anyone is tripping over c'est. I believe the problem is the house being the one doing the work rather than having work done to it. A house cannot have work to do because not only is it not a living thing, it also hasn't got the brain or limbs to do any work. So there cannot be a house with a lot of work to do, but there can be a house with a lot of work to be done.

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