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Time's Up! Your Domain Just Expired

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Have you ever been so busy you forgot to renew the domain for your website?
Whoops! If you don’t renew a domain on time, getting it back can be a hassle and cost you a lot of money.
Let’s take a look at what happens when a domain expires, and why it’s important to renew domains on time—even if you’re not sure you’ll continue to use them.

What happens when a domain expires

As soon as a domain expires, it goes into a grace period.  During this time, don’t panic! For a short time, you can renew your domain name at the regular price.
While the grace period may vary a bit between registrars, at Namecheap the grace period for .com domains registered is 27 days.
However, the period is shorter for some domain names. For example, .de domain names have a negative grace period at Namecheap. That means it’s critical to stay on top of the renewal process, because for these domains you need to renew them five days before the domain expires.

Fall from Grace

After the grace period expires, you face significant risk of losing your domain name.
Expired domain names will be auctioned off to the highest bidder at this point.
If someone wants your domain and buys it during this auction period, you will not be able to renew it.

Redemption Period

If you’re lucky and no one bid on your domain, then it will go into the redemption period.
You can still renew the domain during the redemption period, but at Namecheap it costs an extra $88.88 in addition to the renewal fee. This fee varies between registrars, but most will charge something because of costs to recover the domain. 

Pending Delete

Once the redemption period is over, the domain name goes into what’s called pending delete. At this point, it means the domain name will expire and be deleted. This process is often swift, but it can take up to 90 days.
After a domain has been deleted, it is considered a brand new domain and is available for anyone to register it on a first-come, first-served basis.
Given the extra cost and hassle of renewing a domain name after it expires, it makes sense to renew domain names early.

Why this matters even if you’re done with a domain

Maybe you’re done using a domain and don’t think you need to renew it. 
But think about this: how would you feel if someone else owned the domain name?
When your domain name expires, it gets telegraphed to the world that someone thought the domain name was interesting or valuable. Hundreds of people get daily “drop lists” of domain names that are expiring. They scour through them to find domains that might be worth registering.
There’s a greater likelihood of your domain name being registered by someone else if you let it expire than if you hadn’t registered in the first place.

Save effort and hassle and renew domains on time!

If there’s a chance you might use the domain in the future, or if you registered the domain to protect your brand, it probably makes sense to spend just a little bit of money to renew the domain rather than let it go back into the wild.
Renew or transfers your domain names now at Namecheap. It’s quick and easy.


Andrew Allemann is editor of Domain Name Wire, the longest-running blog covering the business of domain names. Domain Name Wire has covered the business of domain name investing for over ten years.

 

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Andrew Allemann

Andrew is the founder and editor of Domain Name Wire, a publication that has been covering domain names since 2005. He has personally written over 10,000 posts covering domain name sales, policy, and strategies for domain name owners. Andrew has been quoted in stories about domain names in The Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, New York Times and Fortune. More articles written by Andrew .

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