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An expired domain is not actually lost forever and it is possible to get your site back up and running if you act quickly.

When the owner of a domain does not renew by the expiry date listed at the registrar the domain goes into an “expired” status. This period runs about 30 – 40 days. The domain owner may not have acted on the 90, 60, 30 and 5 day email renewal reminders or they might not have even received them due to outdated contact information at the registrar. During these 40 days of grace all services are shut off – no web site and no email are the clear indicators that your domain has probably expired.  The owner can still renew at the usual rate the registrar charges.

The next phase the domain enters is called “redemption period”. At this point the contact information changes to the registrar. There is now an additional cost to the owner to re-activate and re-register the domain. This is usually around $100 depending on the registrar. The domain can only be re-registered by the owner. The domain is not accessible to the public yet. This phase can last another 30 – 40 days.

After the redemption period the domain’s status will change to “locked” as it enters into the 5 day deletion phase. On the last day sometime between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. Pacific Time the name goes back into the public pool for anyone to register.

Officially this entire process is supposed to only take 75 days but due to the date ranges in the first 2 phases it can take longer.

As part of our domain management service we will actually pick up the phone and call you before your domain expires if you have not renewed it or contacted us.  This can save a lot of time, hassle, and lost business.  We understand that spam filters, phishing emails, and other distractions can easily result in a domain registration being overlooked.  We also recommend that all clients register domains for multiple years in advance to avoid the annual renewal hassle.

If you are closing up your shop or winding up your business it is a good practice to hang onto your domain at least for a couple of years. The cost is minimal and who knows you may have second thoughts. And if someone else registers your old domain you never know what web site they might point it to. 

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