Difference between Flat and Apartment | Flat vs Apartment

“Do you live in a flat ?” or “Do you live in an apartment?” Facing a dilemma to choose the correct statement to use? That wouldn’t be an issue if one knew the meaning of the terms. Not only students but people of various ages often have used these terms interchangeably without understanding the context they’re using them in. People are often faced with the common confusion of whether to use ‘flat’ or ‘apartment’. This article will act as a solution to all the queries one has regarding these words.

The English Language is one of the simplest languages, provided you know the meaning of the words that you are using. If the difference between commonly used words is clear to the students, it will help them to use the words correctly. In this article, let’s find out whether ‘flat’ and ‘apartment’ are different words or not with the following topics discussed below:

Table Summarising the Difference between Flat and Apartment




The word flat means a residential place.

The term apartment refers to a place where people stay.


It is used as a Noun.

It is used as a noun.


We rented a flat in New Orleans.

My brother has a beautiful apartment in Mumbai. .

As you can notice above, both ‘flat’ and ‘apartment’ have the same meaning. But whether they can be used interchangeably or not, you will come to know in the detailed discussion below. Let’s have a look at it.

The Difference between Flat and Apartment – Meaning

There is basically no difference between these terms except where they are used. The word ‘flat’ is used in British English. Flats are residential places. People can either stay in a rented flat or have their own flat. Flats are usually one storey buildings. Whereas ‘apartment’ is used in American English and also means residential place. Apartments are generally multi-storeyed in nature. So one can easily use these terms interchangeably, but they have to keep in mind the audience they are addressing. If you are speaking to a UK audience, then you’ve to use the term ‘flat’, and if you’re talking to US people, then the term ‘apartment’ is used.

Example of Flat and Apartment

The examples below will be beneficial for students to understand the terms ‘flat’ and ‘apartment’’.

Flat – My friend bought a flat in Texas. (noun)

Apartment – Mr Potter has an apartment in a posh locality. (noun)

The examples will prove to be beneficial for the students to understand that both ‘flat’ and ‘apartment’ are synonymous and interchangeable.

Flat and Apartment – Conclusion

To sum up, the words ‘flat’ and ‘apartment’ can be used in place of one another depending upon the type of audience and are synonymous too. This article points out how the words ‘flat’ and ‘apartment’ are different from one another, thus making it easier for students to put them in sentences without confusion. BYJU’S offers various articles on many such ‘differences between two words’ that students often get confused with.

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