Buying a Domain Name is not enough to make it a person’s property forever. After registering a Domain Name, they must renew their registration. If not, the Domain Name will be back where it was, and maybe owned by another person.

Here are the basics of what you need to know about what happens to the expired Domains.

“Owning” a Domain

You must know how the ownership of the domains works, so that you understand where they go after expiring.

The Registry

It’s the responsible of maintaining databases for domain names for a specific TLD (TopLevelDomain)

The Registrar

It’s the organization which is authorized to register domain names.

The Reseller

Their work consists doing the deals with the registrar behalf of the registrant.

The Registrant

It’s the one who owns a Domain Name (Who bought it and was given the rights of it for some time). You must do the Domain Search Availability so that you can acquire it.

Renewing a Domain

The Domain name’s owner must renew the registration each time it ends so that they can keep it. Many people will set up their domains to auto-renew with their reseller so they don’t need to worry about renewals; others choose to manually renew their domains because they’re unsure how long they would like to keep them for. See below steps of handling expired domains.

*Almost* Expired Domains

When someone decides to let the domain expires, what will happen?

Grace Period

This period vary from a reseller to another. It gives you the chance to reclaim your domain even if it has expired.

Redemption Grace Period

It comes after the grace period. It’s a 30 day window where you can still retrieve your domain, but there will be an additional late penalty fee charged by the registry added to the normal fee of registration.

Expired Domains

If the last two mentioned periods have gone, that means you have no ownership on your domain and it is available for someone else to purchase. There are somethings that can happen.


Anyone who places a backorder on your domain will be notified as soon as it is available for purchasing.


With no backorders, the Domain will be auctioned off to the highest bidder.


The domain will be offered at a closeout price if no one purchases it during the auction period.

Back Into the Wild!

If the Domain doesn’t get purchased, it will return to the registry. So, it will be available again for anyone to purchase it.

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