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How can I buy a domain that has already been registered?

How can I buy the domain name www.autospell.com. It seems to have a weird status with no website, but also it is not available to buy.

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That's not a weird status for a domain to be in at all. It's actually a very common situation for a domain to be purchased but not used. Sometimes it's done by companies/individuals who are developing/planning on developing a site at that address. At other times, it's done by domain squatters/speculators. Personally, I would not buy a domain from a squatter/speculator, as you're contributing to the problem of domain squatting. –  Lèse majesté Dec 13 '10 at 5:17
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migrated from stackoverflow.com Dec 12 '10 at 22:38

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marked as duplicate by danlefree Feb 14 '12 at 2:29

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3 Answers

Normally you can get the name of the domain holder directly from a whois lookup. But in this case the resulting data is:

Domain Name: AUTOSPELL.COM
Registrar: TUCOWS INC.
Whois Server: whois.tucows.com
Referral URL: http://domainhelp.opensrs.net
Name Server: NS1.DSREDIRECTION.COM
Name Server: NS2.DSREDIRECTION.COM
Status: redemptionPeriod
Updated Date: 21-nov-2010
Creation Date: 12-oct-1998
Expiration Date: 11-oct-2010

Which is interesting because the Status is "redemptionPeriod". This means that the previous domain holder has let their registration lapse, and they have a limited period to restore the domain. I'm actually not sure when the clock starts ticking though. My guess is that the Registar TUCOWS gave the holder a 40 day grace period before submitting the status change. That would mean that domain would become available ~30 days from 21-Nov-2010.

The other interesting thing is the Registrar TUCOWS is domain wholesaler, not a retailer such as GoDaddy, so you can't get the domain directly from TUCOWS. Their website recommends: "... speak with your favourite Registration company to find out when a REDEMPTION PERIOD/PENDING DELETE RESTORABLE domain will be available for registration." You should probably do that right away because there's a good chance the domain will be up for auction sometime between now and the end of the year.

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I see you as having one real option: Register the name at a company that specializes in "grabbing" expired names as soon as they become available. I've used snapnames.com for this, but there are others. Basically, you "bid" on the name, Snapnames (or whatever service you choose) tries to grab it for you, and if no one else knows about it and wants it, then you can get it for $60.

The Tucows Site says not to contact them if you're not the owner, so I don't see any other option. http://www.tucowsdomains.com/whois-use-and-information/what-does-redemptionperiod-or-pending-delete-restorable-mean/

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Usually you can find registred but not actively used domains at websites like www.sedo.com. This particular domain does not show up as being available for sale, but then again you could use the brokerage services offered by sedo to post an inquiry to the domain holder if he/she would be willing to sell it.

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