"I will have done it" or "I will have it done"? What's the difference? I found that future perfect sentence structure is:

Subject + will have + 3rd form of verb or past participle + object

(http://www.studyandexam.com/future-perfect-tense.html) but I often hear "I will have it done". Which one is the correct form? Maybe both?


Both are correct.

The first sentence states that by an undefined time you yourself will have performed a certain task.

The second sentence states that you are undertaking to ensure that the task is performed, even if you don't do it yourself.

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  • And if task can be performed only by me? Like "I will have finished my project by then"? Is "I will have my project finished by then" incorrect? – k_wit Aug 31 '16 at 17:42

I think putting it into context makes the difference:

Person A: "I need [something] done by lunchtime."

Person B: "I will have it done by then."

Implies that Person B had not necessarily planned to complete the task by lunchtime, but now will because Person A has explicitly asked.

Person A: "I need [something] done by lunchtime."

Person B: "I will have done it by then."

Implies Person B would have completed the task by lunchtime regardless of Person A's statement.

Both are correct but, depending on the situation, one may not be appropriate.

The former response from Person B is submissive; Person A could be an employer giving an instruction to an employee, who confirms that the instruction will be carried out. The latter response could be seen as dismissive; Person B is stating that the instruction is redundant. Some employers may regard the latter as flippant, as if Person B feels he/she doesn't need to be given instructions.

Alternatively, the order of the words could be used to stress the importance of 'it' being 'done':

Person A: "I will help you do it tonight."

Person B: "I will have done it by then!"

If you change the response to 'have it done' it feels less powerful.

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