How to Transfer Your Domain

To transfer a domain, follow these steps:

Initiate transaction. Fill out the form on the new registrar’s Web site and pay for the domain transfer.

Contact administrator. Notify the administrative contact associated with the domain you wish to transfer. This is you or someone in your organization, or the company you hired to handle affairs of your Web site.

Verify the request. The new registrar will request the transfer and you may be notified for verification through email or your account at the current registrar.

Confirm WHOIS information. After the transfer, confirm that the WHOIS database has the correct administrative contact listed for your domain. Visit: or contact your new domain registrar.

By Lisa Gullette, CreatiVisibility, December 2007

Your domain is registered by one company, your hosting service is supplied elsewhere, then you find out that another company will beat the prices you are paying if you bundle the hosting and domain name registration and employ the services all in one company. This will be beneficial to your bottom line, but you are uncertain how to transfer your domain.

Whether you have been paying one registration company for years or only a few months, you can switch the company that handles your domain registration. The only stipulation is that the transfer can only take place after 60 days of your last transfer or purchase of that domain.

To transfer a domain, first check the Web site of the company you wish to finally use. There will be instructions for an initial transfer purchase. The fees are usually similar to purchasing a new domain for a year, so it can be a money saver to wait until your yearly fee is due at the original registrar.

After you fill in the forms at the desired registrar, contact the administrative contact associated with the domain and current registrar to advise them of your transfer. The administrative contact is an individual or organization authorized to interact with your domain name registrar on behalf of the registrant specified in the WHOIS record. This confirms that you are actually authorizing this transaction. The new company will send a transfer request, and your current company should email you for authorization as well. All of these communications also go through a main Registry, but you will not have to make that contact. Transfers take several days to complete.

You are responsible for filling in the appropriate administrative contact on the forms for the registration which will update the WHOIS database directory. The WHOIS directory is a database of domains and the owners associated with those names.

It may be in your best interest to check the policy of your new registrar company. Some will allow you to lock domain names to prevent unauthorized domain transfers. You can unlock your domain online through your account or in that initial contact when you inform the company of the transfer.

Beware of scams! Be mindful of where your domain is registered. Some fraudulent transfers are being made when a purchaser gets a notice from a company that a payment is due and that consumer pays without a question. The domain gets transferred to another company and the associated Web site goes down because the proper steps were not taken to change DNS information on the hosting server. This scam is common and emphasizes the security of the locking feature offered by some registrar companies.

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