GoDaddy allows jokester to appraise/auction his domain name year after year and then renew!

So I won an auction for an expired domain name at GoDaddy for $2,605 on the 1st of May.

I did the mistake and didn’t check out the domain name before made my bid and won the auction.

I checked out whois history after I won the auction and found that the owner had bought the name from Namefind (a GoDaddy company) in April 2016. He is a new domainer from Germany that owns about 200 domains.

He immediately let the domain name expire at GoDaddy so that he could get a live appraisal using the all familiar GoDaddy expired auctions. The domain was sold in May 2016 for $1,025. He then renewed the name and the idiot that won the auction last year was left for a lovely email from GoDaddy with one of the beautiful messages:

  • “Your item’s been deleted”
  • “Your auction has been canceled”
  • “******* is no longer available

Lets move on to this year’s idiot: Konstantinos. This is the 4th auction in the past month that I have won and the domain was renewed at GoDaddy. Unfortunately I paid for the first 3 before the names were renewed and then received a refund. I won’t talk about the minor bank fees that I have to pay for these transactions but I do want to mention that I have to do bloody paperwork for each of these transactions for tax purposes. And that is twice the paperwork than if the purchase had gone through! This is utterly ridiculous.

Fortunately this time I realized that the domain was not going to be paid so I withheld payment as long as I could. The owner renewed before the last day that I would have to pay. And I would have paid for it to avoid suspension of my account, even though I was sure this was getting renewed as the owner has done it again. And if it wasn’t me the auction winner then the domain would have been paid and then refunded to some other poor buyer…

GoDaddy claims that the renewals are a small percentage but it doesn’t feel this way from this end. Lately almost half of the domains I win get renewed. I am almost certain that another domain I have won and paid will soon get renewed.

I guess this jokester enjoys this live appraisal so he keeps doing it year after year. I bet his is happy the price went up this year. This whole mess exists because GoDaddy allows it. All other auction houses like Namejet and Snapnames don’t have a similar problem.

GoDaddy claims that they want to give the owner as much time as they can. That is simply BS. I don’t care if the give the owner a year to renew. Just start the auction AFTER that year! Is it simple enough? Yes? No?

Some will say that I shouldn’t be complaining and just don’t bid. But I am trying to do business here. GoDaddy tries to but is not really succeeding vert well.

I still remember NamesCon 2015 where I was promised that this issue was going to be fixed. 2+ years later we are still talking about the same problems. Nothing gets fixed at GoDaddy. And if it is the pace is so slow that nobody even notices anything. Maybe 5 years from now this will be fixed (by someone that will eventually realize the stupidity of the current system) and a few exhausted domainers will notice…

Here is some of my GoDaddy auction history from 2012 to 2016:

2012: Your Auction Has Ended”: Will GoDaddy give me back my time and money? (17 comments)

2014: 13 Ways To Make Go Daddy Auctions Better (18 comments)

2016: What the F*CK is wrong with GoDaddy? (37 comments)


About Konstantinos Zournas

I studied Computer Engineering and Computer Science in London, UK and I am now living in Athens, Greece. I went online in 1995, started coding in 1996 and began buying domain names and creating websites in 2000. I started the blog in 2012.


  1. Why don’t you just tell us what the domain name is so we don’t get stuck doing the same thing?
    If it’s frustrating to you and to us, then say something. Help others not make the same mistake.
    Maybe this jokester will reconsider doing it if you call him out by domain name. Buyer beware.

  2. I don’t consider the closing bids to be free “appraisals” but the issue is that this method is apparently a loophole, allowing GoDaddy to auction the domains while the owner can still renew them.

    Either way, GoDaddy wins.

    Sometimes, the former owner will file a UDRP after they didn’t renew the domain.

    It’s obvious that this method is taken advantage of by domainers, not end-users. I agree, that spending time and managing such investments (tax/VAT documents etc. ) is a pain in the ass.

  3. That is a major reason I rarely bid on GoDaddy auctions anymore. I just don’t feel like dealing with the nonsense.

    There are multiple ways GoDaddy could resolve this, though they haven’t over many years.

    One simple solution is to just start the auction a week later. That way when the auction ends the registrant would no longer be able to renew it.


  4. The same occurs at dynadot all the time. Most of the time the good expiring names are owned by Jason Newby. He renews them days after you win the auction

  5. You have to consider this is an auction, and not a purchase.

    In North America auctions come with risks, and buyer beware.

    K for sure you are a common sense type of guy, and you have a valid point, but Godaddy’s system works, at the end of the day it’s an auction, and not a BIN.

    In doing so you are getting value in buying something for less than market value. Risk, and reward.

    • I have made bids (not for domains) and won items in Christies, Heritage Auctions, countless other auction houses and of course eBay. This is the first time I hear about this.
      When I win and pay then I get the item.

      Unless you are talking about foreclosure auctions in the US that I am not familiar with.

  6. GoDaddy is heavily ladden with brand issues, server errors, coding issues and an intolerable disdain for its resellers and partners. Ever since Bob Parsons left, the whole corporation has gone to hell in terms of function. It’s huge marketing engine masks all these issues and more, but you just cannot rely on tech support to fix obvious programming issues where resellers can’t set domain name prices or opt-out of displaying “premium domain” listings (which are notoriously poor names with extraordinarily over-inflated price tags).

    Any real domain registration could easily take them down if they were armed with an effective business plan, took care of their customers and resellers, and aggressively attacked instabilities with innovative security tools, ever improved code and new technologies.

    No tool should ever fail or not function correctly upon detection for more than the time required to address it and fix it. Anything less is unacceptable. What you are seeing is wide gaping holes in the most simple and unprofessional policies, so just imagine what is happening behind the scenes.

    • That is why I have kept my domains away from GoDaddy for the past 15 years. I have written enough code to smell problems and instability a mile away. No matter what a few people do to fix all the problems manually there is nothing being done to properly fix problems once and for all.

  7. There is a cost to innovation. The cost may not be monetary in nature, instead it may involve an imperfect process…….Hopefully this will get fixed.

  8. Why do you think they paid off the Anti-Godaddy site which was a very popular website.

    Because instead of fixing the problems affecting their company, they would rather pay people off and shove them under the carpet. This is how Godaddy handles reputation management, they pay for it instead of upholding it.

    Godaddy is terrible which is why I transferred all my domains far away from Arizona.

  9. The trick is to not pay for the auction when you win it. Let it sit there in your account waiting to paid, but just make sure you have a valid credit card listed. Normally on day 3 after the auction is over they will automatically charge your card. 90% of the time the original registrant would have already renewed by then and your card never gets charged so no more waiting on your money.

  10. Happened to me several times for 4 figure purchases at godaddy. In fact I faced a similar issue with snapnames this time. I won an auction and sent payment but not sure how the owner renewed the domain (owner is a domainer and has a for sale landing page atm) since renewal period was over. I
    was told by the manager that they started an investigation with the registrar which resulted in nothing. I’m getting a refund from them but I had to pay $50 fee to send the funds and not to mention the time I invested contacting my bank again and again regarding the payment. So I’m in a loss here even if I don’t get the domain. Could have invested in somewhere else…

  11. Current Issues: Domain Owner Renew Domain After Someone Won The Domain At Auction?

    The owner of a domain has given some extra time to renew the domain; in exchange that the owner of the domain must have to pay extra $80? Per ICANN or per Goddady policy?

    Suggestion: to avoid excitement and confusion:
    A:) Focus on current issue?
    B.) Avoid bringing up other issue to the table; to the point that a current issues might not be heard and can be neglicted.
    C.) Suggestion: perhaps communicating with the potential bidders about the domain situation.
    D.) Do step #D if you have accomplished the #A,#B,#C. ?

  12. Happened to me lots of times too. Then there is Huge Domains, bidding everthing up as well on top of it.

  13. Very annoying. Happenned to me a few times. Allow me to assert that it is not merely a “bug/problem”. It is quite obvious that Godaddy can profit from this cashflow, even if they return it eventually. I imagine the total amount generated every year is significant enough in terms of revenue numbers and interest to let this poor user experience at Godaddy auctions persist. Lots of wasted time – following the auction, bidding at the auction, ,and, like you said, dealing with cancellation afterwards. It’s been said before on the good bad and ugly series, this is definitely the ugly when it comes to Godaddy expired auctions.

  14. I had same issue, at some point i got 3 auction deals like that out of 5 i won. I was supper pissed. 2 of those were domains i really wanted for my core business. It worked out, i reached out to the owner and he matched the sale price of the auctions. Which i didnt mind paying, since i was end user on those.

    • Oh and i should give Kosta credit there, he mentioned just to reach out to the guy. Which didnt even cross my mind. And i did. And Kostantinos was right!

  15. Godaddy polishes it’s big name brand in the market ONLY and don’t fix their worst system at all, totally useless to do business with them. They might be good at domain registrar but other stuff…BIG NO. Been with them for many years, but started transferring domains when I wanted to do other things and don’t register new domains with them anymore!

  16. My solution is to pay using PayPal so if a refund happens there’s no fee or currency exchange issue. Still sucks but at least I can always use the PayPal balance later.

  17. The auction process i simple. Not sure why you guys can’t get that. They auction off names before they go into redemption. Simple as that.

  18. The owners of the domain names are using the auction process to discover the market value of the domains. Nothing more to it than that. Tells them which ones to hang on to, and which ones are not going to draw (m)any bidders.

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