up·​keep | \ ˈəp-ˌkēp How to pronounce upkeep (audio) \

Definition of upkeep

1 : the act of maintaining in good condition : the state of being maintained in good condition
2 : the cost of maintaining in good condition

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Examples of upkeep in a Sentence

Who is responsible for the upkeep of these buildings? Once your car gets that old, the cost of upkeep can get very expensive. The yard requires very little upkeep. We sold our horse because we could no longer afford its upkeep.
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Recent Examples on the Web

The docks and piers are viewed as belonging to the houses that pay for their upkeep and maintenance and the property taxes. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Your pier or mine? La Playa docks are dredging up big controversy in this upscale Shelter Island area," 24 Aug. 2019 Wireless technology is among the most capital-intensive industries, with annual costs of upkeep and expansion in the tens of billions of dollars. Brian Fung, David Goldman, And Jessica Schneider, CNN, "Sprint and T-Mobile merger is about to clear its biggest hurdle," 17 June 2019 The artificial islands have needed upkeep and fresh infusions of sand. Tristan Baurick, nola.com, "Reshaping the Mississippi is unraveling wildlife habitat: The River’s Revenge," 15 June 2019 These associations are generally tasked with coordinating the upkeep of the common property of a building or planned or gated community. Janna Herron, USA TODAY, "Buying a home? There's a good chance you'll deal with HOAs, so here's what you should know," 6 Aug. 2019 The only upkeep here is a daily wipe-down — no sealant needed. The Good Housekeeping Institute, Good Housekeeping, "GH Seal Spotlight: Caesarstone Countertops," 5 Apr. 2019 The Sovereign Grant, which pays for salaries of the Queen's staff, upkeep of palaces and official royal duties, including travel, footed the bill for the renovations. Max Foster, CNN, "Meghan and Harry spent £2.4m of taxpayers' money on new home," 24 June 2019 The pasture has been beaten to hell by the animals, requiring in spring, summer, and fall a constant upkeep of irrigation to maintain the grass for forage. Christopher Ketcham, Harper's magazine, "Ramblin’ Man," 24 June 2019 Pal prostrates and leaves a few dollar bills on the floor as an donation for upkeep. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Sikh drivers are transforming U.S. trucking. Take a ride along the Punjabi American highway," 27 June 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'upkeep.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of upkeep

1884, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Dictionary Entries near upkeep



up Jenkins




upland boneset

Statistics for upkeep

Last Updated

3 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for upkeep

The first known use of upkeep was in 1884

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More Definitions for upkeep



English Language Learners Definition of upkeep

: the process of keeping something in good condition : the care or maintenance of buildings, equipment, etc.


up·​keep | \ ˈəp-ˌkēp How to pronounce upkeep (audio) \

Kids Definition of upkeep

: the act or cost of keeping something in good condition … “the rent is cheaper than what your old house costs in upkeep.”— Ellen Raskin, The Westing Game

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More from Merriam-Webster on upkeep

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with upkeep

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for upkeep

Spanish Central: Translation of upkeep

Nglish: Translation of upkeep for Spanish Speakers

Comments on upkeep

What made you want to look up upkeep? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


authorized for issue (as a bond)

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