Grammar GuideWord ClassesWhat's the difference between "due to" and "because of"?

What's the difference between "due to" and "because of"?

What's the difference between "due to" and "because of"?

The phrases due to and because of both show a cause-and-effect relationship. However, they are not technically interchangeable.

Because of modifies verbs, so it should only come after verbs. Due to functions like an adjective and modifies nouns. It comes after a noun.

Due to might come after a noun, but there is usually a be verb between the noun and the phrase due to. You must decide whether you are modifying a noun or a verb to determine which phrase to use. In this example, it is the noun "growth" that's being modified:

  • The tree's growth is due to nutrient-rich soil.

We can also restructure the sentence to use a verb phrase. In this example, it is the verb "grown" that's being modified:

  • The tree has grown because of the nutrients in the soil.

This also means you have two different options for correcting your sentences. Let's look at another example:

Incorrect: The restaurant failed due to poor money management.

In this sentence, it is the verb "failed" that's being modified. Either switch to the verb modifier:

Correct: The restaurant failed because of poor money management.

or restructure your sentence so that it is a noun that's being modified:

Correct: The restaurant's failure was due to poor money management.