Domain name life cycle

Updated by Josselyn Rodriguez

What happens when you register a domain name? When will it expire – and what happens if it does? The following list describes the different phases of a domain name.

  • When a domain is available, it can be registered through any entity that provides domain-registration services. Domain names which are available can be registered for a period between 1 and 10 years.
  • When a domain is registered, it can be used for a certain length of time. Services such as website and email hosting can be set up. 
    • After the registration, the domain must stay with the current registrar for a minimum period of 60 days (60-day registrar-lock). Once the 60-day period is over, the domain can be transferred to any other registrar, if desired. 
    • The domain name will remain registered for the duration of the term paid for. After this, you will need to renew the domain name if you want to keep it. We will send out a notification 60, 30,  and 14 days before the domain is due to expire. This makes it possible to renew the domain name early without losing any time. 
    • You're also able to request a domain renewal at any time.
  • When a domain is expired, it can be renewed so it goes back to a registered state and is back online. While the domain is expired, website and email hosting services will not be available. The domain can be in a expired state between 0-30 days. 
    • The registrar will typically hold the domain when it's expired to allow you to renew the domain name for the regular rate.
    • When the domain is expired, it is not possible to transfer it to another registrar unless you first renew it. This makes it difficult to manage expired domain names.
  • When a domain is on redemption grace period, it means that it wasn't renewed during the expired period and the domain name will enter a 30 day redemption period. During this period, the domain is no longer active - any websites or email addresses associated with the domain name will not work. 
    • During this period, you may request that your Registrar redeem and renew the deleted domain for one year at a higher price than the renewal cost. 
    • This is your final opportunity to renew the domain.
  • When a domain is pending deletion, it means the domain is about to be released to the public for registration. At this stage, there is nothing you can do to prevent it. The domain is usually released 5 days after it enters this state.

Please note that this applies to typical domains. Premium domains and popular domains might follow a different timeline.

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