Confused about いえ and うち for vocab 家

super stumped

can not, for the life of me, figure out the differences and nuances of the two different pronunciations for 家

help is, of course, much appreciated


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いえ refers only to the physical building itself.

うち can be used for that as well, but also can be used in a more blurry sense to refer to the place, the family, etc.

It’s kind of like “house” and “home” in English, but I don’t think it lines up perfectly.


うち is usually someone’s home. Mostly your own.

I’m usually more taken aback by the か and け readings.

Like mentioned already, I also believe いえ refers to the physical aspect: the house as a building, and a construction.

You could say, for example, “それは僕の家”

I use うち to refer to the more… Shall we say, emotional and non-structural aspect of the inside of a house. It can refer to the household, home, one’s family, or even the parents specifically, depending on the person’s living affairs.

When I talk about my cat, I often refer to him as:


I kind of like the distinction :joy: It just makes sure to show that I don’t personally own Leo, but the entire family/household does.