When an individual purchases a domain name, he/she can choose to reserve that domain name for a certain number of years. An expiration date will be attached to each domain name. When the expiration date nears, an individual must choose to renew that domain name or abandon it.
If an individual has not reserved the domain name for an extended period of time, he/she will likely be required to renew the domain name every year. The renewal cost varies from one company to another. However, it usually costs under $20 to renew a domain name. Nevertheless, in many instances, an individual will no longer wish to keep a domain name.
In some cases, an individual may try to sell the domain name if he/she knows someone who is interested in it. However, more commonly he/she will allow the domain name to expire. This helps to prohibit domain name sharks (individuals who purchase excessive numbers of domain names) from holding domain names that they do not use or that they do not plan to use.
Expired domain names maintain an expired status for a period of forty days. This period acts as a grace period during which the owner of the domain name is still able to renew the name. However, if the domain name is not renewed by the end of the forty day period, it enters into a redemption period.
Throughout the duration of the redemption period, the website’s data is slowly deleted, and if the owner decides to renew the domain name, he/she will be required to pay additional fees. Following the end of this phase, the domain name will pass into a five day deletion period during which time it is locked to all people. After the five day period, expired domain names can be obtained by anyone. There are domain name check resources available that allow individuals to search for expired domain names.