Make Nouns Possessive

A possessive noun shows ownership, as in tenants’ keys. The keys belong to the tenants. Sometimes, though, ownership is loosely implied, as in the manager’s hours. The apartment manager doesn’t actually own the hours, but the possessive noun helps specify that the manager works during those hours.

Test Tip

If a noun can be placed in a phrase with "of," as in "the keys of the tenants" or "the hours of the manager," then the noun is possessive and needs an apostrophe.
  1. To make singular nouns and plural nouns that do not end in -s possessive, add an apostrophe (’) + -s.

Al is Fern’s husband.
His boss’s house is around the corner.
She teaches women’s gymnastics.

  1. To make plural nouns that end in -s possessive, add only an apostrophe.

The movers truck was blocking the alley.

  1. When something is jointly owned, make only the last noun possessive.

Al and Fern’s new apartment is great.