So, you’re looking to transfer your domain somewhere else, huh? We all know that there are several different reasons why you might want to move away from your current registrar. Maybe it’s to save some extra money by taking advantage of some amazing domain transfer prices. Otherwise, maybe you’re just looking to consolidate your portfolio and have all your domain names at just one place. Whatever the reason for performing a domain transfer might be, this post was created to make you aware of some simple rules that go with the transfer process. By following these rules it will help guarantee you have the fastest and smoothest experience!
Domain Transfer Rules
The process of transferring domain names might seem a bit overwhelming if you’ve never done it before. There are lots of different things you need to do in preparation and moving from one registrar to another doesn’t happen instantly. If you follow the checklist I have below it should help make things easier for you and trust me, once you’ve done it once you’ve done it a hundred time. Our outline will provide you with ways to satisfy all of the domain name transfer rules and set expectations for a smooth transfer to any other domain registrar.
Prepare Your Domain Names for Transfer
Check Your Eligibility – People often forget one simple rule when it comes to transferring a domain name – It cannot be transferred within 60 days of registration. This means you won’t be able to transfer a new domain over to a new registrar until day 61 after its registration. In addition to that, you also can’t transfer a domain name that has been transferred within the past 60 days. These 60-day domain name transfer rules are set by ICANN (the governing body of the domain name system). So, if you were trying to be sneaky by registering your domain name at some cheap registrar you’ll have to stay put until your 60 days is up.
Disable WHOIS Private Registration – Private domain registration shields your ownership information from being shared to the public. Since GDPR took effect, most domain registrars have begun to hide personally identifiable information found in WHOIS records for all customers whether they have WHOIS protection or not. With that in mind, most registrars require that you temporarily turn off WHOIS protection during the transfer process. This shouldn’t compromise your personal information since most registrars have removed public WHOIS records in compliance with GDPR anyways. However, this is one of many necessary domain name transfer rules. Your new registrar will need to be able to access WHOIS contact information in order to ensure you are the rightful domain owner.
Make Sure Your Information Is Up to Date – Every domain name is required to have accurate and updated account information for its owner. Domain owners that do not provide accurate information are liable to have their domain suspended. Domain name transfer rules state that the WHOIS information must match the domain owners admin email address. This is really important to note because all important information regarding the transfer will be sent to the admin email address. Incorrect or inaccurate information can significantly delay the transfer process because you won’t receive necessary details to confirm the domain transfer.
Unlock Your Domain Names – Domain registrars put a few unique rules in place to help prevent unauthorized transfers and locking domains is one of them. If your domain is not unlocked then you will not be able to transfer it. These locks prevent your domain from changing nameservers, contact information or transfer requests while enabled. Make sure to unlock your domains before you attempt to transfer them. Once your domain has been successfully moved to the new registrar you should go back in and lock it again if the new registrar hasn’t done so automatically.
Submit Your Transfer Request
Update Your DNS Records – If you are planning to use the nameservers of the registrar which you are moving to, it’s a good idea to change them before hand. If you are using nameservers for a specific web host and do not want them changed then you can skip this step. For those planning to change them, doing so ahead of time will make the move easier because you will not have access to your DNS settings after you initiate the transfer. When you are confirming your domain transfer with your new registrar you should be able to update the configuration of your domain name settings.
Retrieve an Auth Code – You will need to request an authorization code (often called an EPP code) to transfer a domain. Without this code, you will not be authorized to enable any kind of transfer for your domain. You will be able to retrieve the code in the control panel of your current registrar or it will be emailed to the admin email address. As previously mentioned above, it is important that your information is accurate and up to date because this code also gets sent to the admin contact email address.
Pay for Your Transfer – The final step to transferring a domain name is paying for the transfer. When you transfer a domain it’s required that you renew the domain name for a minimum of 1 year. Most registrars include the registration extension into the cost of the transfer. That means your domain will automatically be renewed for another year once the transfer is complete. Don’t worry if you’re afraid of losing any remaining time on your current registration – You won’t! An additional year will simply be added on top of the time you have left.