How to best transfer and keep a domain name I own?
January 20, 2010 11:28 AM   Subscribe

How to best transfer and keep a domain name I own?

Posted for my husband:

I own a personal domain name, which I pay Yahoo Domains for each year. I paid $18 per year for 2006 and 2007, but for the last two years the price has somehow increased to $44 per year.

I would like to own this domain forever... can I purchase it for 5, 10 or 20 years? Where to best do that? And how do I transfer it to another company?

Just FYI, in case it matters - I have all traffic redirected to a site hosted elsewhere (it was a Google site for a while, now it's on
posted by rglass to Computers & Internet (11 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Does your registration of the domain expire in 30 days? If so, in order to keep the name you will have to renew it with yahoo domains. This is a ICANN guideline, I believe. Basically you cannot transfer a domain within 30 days of it's expiration date.

if not, then your first goal is to transfer your domain to a different registrar.

Taking a (really) quick look at my registrar of choice, godaddy, i could chose 10 years for a domain name that I made up on the fly.

Godaddy is not the cheapest option out there, but i have no advice on any others.
posted by royalsong at 11:38 AM on January 20, 2010

I have had my domain with for years. I recommend them, as the one problem I had was solved quickly. My last renewal was for five years.

But if you have a very small site (just a redirect page) you may want You pay based on traffic, and the rates are as low as I have seen.
posted by soelo at 12:00 PM on January 20, 2010

I do all my registrations and hosting through dreamhost, which charges the bare minimum of 10 bucks a year for .org/.com/.net registrations. I believe you can do just the registration through them and the hosting elsewhere. They definitely let you register for several years in advance, as well.
posted by TimeDoctor at 12:13 PM on January 20, 2010

I think a 10 year registration is the longest I've seen, but I haven't checked in a while. You could ask any reputable registrar who answers questions. I use
posted by rhizome at 12:25 PM on January 20, 2010

Network Solutions lets you do a 20-year registration for $280., or a 100-year for $1000.

(I do not necessarily recommend them, but I have dealt with them on many occasions over the last 10 years, and haven't ever had major issues with their service, except that they tend to be pretty spammy in their offers of hosting/forwarding/feature-of-the-day.)
posted by liquado at 1:01 PM on January 20, 2010

I am not within 30 days, so it seems I can move it. But how do I go about moving it without having a lapse in ownership?
posted by kdern at 1:04 PM on January 20, 2010

Sorry - I should mention that the question was for me... rglass is my wife.
posted by kdern at 1:05 PM on January 20, 2010

how do I go about moving it without having a lapse in ownership?

The new registrar should have an online "wizard" that walks you right through this. If they don't, choose another registrar. This has to be an extremely common thing, and a registrar that doesn't have easy methods for this seems like they don't really have their ducks in a row.

I know Godaddy does. Choose "Domain Transfer" from the "Domain" menu. You'll enter the domain name and so forth; you'll later get some emails asking you to confirm the transfer and that should be all it takes.

GoDaddy will let you register it for 9 years at a time for $6.99 a year. I suppose you could immediately renew it for another 9 years, and so on.

This is assuming that you are the current registrant [IOW it's not registered to "Yahoo Domains" with them keeping track of which of their customers "owns" it].
posted by chazlarson at 1:25 PM on January 20, 2010

Simply start the domain transfer process here, assuming you use NetSol. In most cases, the steps are:

1) Start the transfer process through a new registrar (usually $15-$20 to transfer). **Make sure you enter correct DNS information for your existing web site/domain/google apps account to prevent interruption of service. Registrars will regularly ask for this as part of the transfer process.**

1a) Realize that your old registrar has "domain protection," or some name variant of such, turned on, so you can't transfer the domain.

2) Attempt to log in to your user account at your old registrar's site, and realize you no longer remember the password.

2b) Request said password be sent to the administrative email address attached to the account.

2c) Realize that the email address attached is an old hotmail account that has long since been harvested by spambots and no longer exists, requiring you to start a separate process to change your email address on record. :P

3) Log in to old registrar account, turn off domain protection, and attempt transfer process at new registrar again.

4) Receive email from old registrar ("Are you sure you want to leave us?"), usually with an authorization code attached.

5) Use said code at new registrar to confirm domain transfer. Enjoy your new registrar.


In all seriousness, my guide is pretty sparse -- the one at NetSol linked above will help you along the way. Good luck!
posted by liquado at 1:26 PM on January 20, 2010 [1 favorite]

I should point out that I've done this through GoDaddy several times, with domains that were originally registered through, 1&,, and so on.

It's always been seamless.
posted by chazlarson at 1:27 PM on January 20, 2010

liquado makes a good point WRT domain protection. That could make it less seamless.

The basic outline, however, is:
  1. Initiate transfer at new registrar.
  2. approve transfer when various parties ask.
  3. ???
  4. Profit!

posted by chazlarson at 1:39 PM on January 20, 2010

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