Once you decide on a domain name, the next step is to check if it has not been taken and eventually have it registered. When you register, there are two choices you can explore:
- You can either find a domain registrar
- Or a web hosting company with its own domain registry.
Since you will be creating a site anyway, option number two would be the most convenient. Think of it as relying on a one-stop shop for all your website needs.
Now, managing a site can be a handful. Thus, it is natural to forget the smallest things – even renewing your domain name once it expires. If this happens, what can you do to get it back?
The answer lies in how much time passed since the domain expired. Chances of reclaiming the domain name become slimmer the more time passed. Here are the options you can explore depending on how long you missed the expiration date:
Only a couple of days
There is still a huge chance you can renew it with no hang-ups – especially if you maintained it regularly. Most domain registrars usually have a renewal grace period that lasts up to 40 days.
19 – 40 days
If you missed the expiration date by this amount of time, the only way to know if you could still renew is to ask your hosting company.
41 – 70 days
As mentioned earlier, the usual extension period for renewal is 40 days. After that is the redemption period that lasts for another 30 days. Basically, this is a period before unclaimed expired domains are up for auction. You can reclaim your domain name during this time but it will cost you extra.
71 – 75 days
After the Redemption period is the Pending Delete status. This means it will be deleted in the registry. The good thing about this is your domain name is almost as good as new. One drawback is if there is a back order for it, someone else might take it once it becomes available. To prevent this, you can make the back order yourself.
What if someone else takes my domain?
In this case, the best chance of reclaiming your domain name is to purchase it from the new owner. The two of you can negotiate on a reasonable price. However, if the new owner claimed your domain name through illegitimate means, you can file a dispute from UDRP ( Uniform Domain-Name Dispute Resolution Policy ).
So if you forgot to renew your domain name, all is not lost yet. Just take note of these time periods to help you decide what you can do to reclaim your domain name.