Need help with an offline domain "takeover"

16 replies
I am representing a local carpet cleaning company who have a website, but no control over it.

The domain was owned by a City Saver sort of printing company and they were supposed to charge $40 a month to the carpet biz owner (for the last 2 years). They never did and when I was hired to redo the website, I was faced with a "you owe me..."

The carpet biz owner ended up paying $500 to the domain owner, who after a few weeks, transferred the domain to me via Namecheap. I asked about accessing the website (Hostgator hosted) and he told me that all his 291 domains had the same password, so his "IT guy" would have to set-up a new PW for the domain, so I could access it.

That was 2-weeks ago. To change a PW, it might take 5-minutes. The guy isn't responding to my emails, phone calls, etc. The carpet guy says he wants to threaten legal action and credit card company involvement.

Hostgator did nothing for me - they won't even email the domain former-owner. I told the carpet biz guy to wait til Monday and I'd work on it.

Any ideas how to access the domain c-panel? It is NOT a WP site and the carpet guy didn't use PayPal to pay the $500.

Worse case scenario - grab all the copy and images and start again.

Thanks in advance!
#domain #offline #takeover #website
  • Profile picture of the author Jason Kanigan
    You own the domain? Your hosting company should let you in. What are they saying to you?
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8508268].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author piney94
    The issue is that we would really like to keep the domain name - it is a great keyword and has good page 1 presence.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8508533].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author vndnbrgj
      Originally Posted by piney94 View Post

      The issue is that we would really like to keep the domain name - it is a great keyword and has good page 1 presence.
      I don't mean to sound like a dick, but you don't sound qualified to be doing this.
      You can keep the domain name.
      Go get a new hosting account somewhere else. Maybe HostGator?
      Get the cheapest plan and dig around for a $0.01 coupon for the first month.
      Once you have your new hosting account, grab your name servers.
      Go into NameCheap and set up custom nameservers.
      Now, wait for the domain name to propogate.
      Go into the C-Panel and set up whatever kind of site you are going to.

      I agree with someone Robert, that you made your client wait too long already.
      You can keep the domain. You don't need access to the other companies domain name. Cut all ties with them. Your client will still have to pay them for hosting. Either they pay the old company that was a hassle to deal with, or they just get a new one. (Less hassle)
      Signature
      Life Begins At The End Of Your Comfort Zone
      - Neale Donald Wilson -
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8508623].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author piney94
        Originally Posted by vndnbrgj View Post

        Once you have your new hosting account, grab your name servers.
        Go into NameCheap and set up custom nameservers.
        Now, wait for the domain name to propogate.
        Go into the C-Panel and set up whatever kind of site you are going to.
        Yep - good point. Since I have control over the domain name (not the website), I can point the nameservers to my own host. Thanks.
        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8508649].message }}
        • Profile picture of the author deu12000
          Originally Posted by piney94 View Post

          Yep - good point. Since I have control over the domain name (not the website), I can point the nameservers to my own host. Thanks.
          Before you do that rip the content, if not you might not have access later. You should rip the content ASAP before they decide they want to take the site down.
          {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8508665].message }}
          • Profile picture of the author Justin T Wells
            This is exactly why I hate the idea of web designers also doing the hosting and keeping absolute control of it and the domain. The guy who asked for the $500 is probably upset at the client for not paying originally. I wouldn't be surprised if this is just all a big misunderstanding that went way overboard, and here we are faced with this crummy situation, with both original parties thinking the other is a crook.

            Many other people keep the domain and hosting separate as well for protection. There are nightmare stories of hosts taking sites down and delaying transfer for all kinds of reasons. When you have the domain through another company, you can start a new hosting account, load a backup, and point the domain to the new host pretty quickly.
            {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8509601].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author SashaLee
    HI there,

    So - the guy that won't respond - tell him you'll send him $100 by Paypal if he changes the password so you can get access. No strings - $100 - new password.

    I bet he responds then. Then you can talk about escrow, etc to protect yourself.

    All the best,

    Sasha
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8508555].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author piney94
      Originally Posted by SashaLee View Post

      HI there,

      So - the guy that won't respond - tell him you'll send him $100 by Paypal if he changes the password so you can get access. No strings - $100 - new password.

      I bet he responds then. Then you can talk about escrow, etc to protect yourself.

      All the best,

      Sasha
      Nice thought, but it's kind of like dealing with a kidnapper. I'm not going to reward a shyster.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8508627].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author deu12000
    OP you are posting conflicting comments here. You said that the domain was put in your namecheap account and on your last post you're saying you don't have access to the domain. If the domain is in your namecheap account then do what was posted above just change the nameservers to a hosting account you control and create the site. If the domain isn't in your namecheap account you have to try getting the domain into any domain registrar account you can. Try paying him off if need be.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8508618].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Rus Sells
    The fact that the client never paid the other guy would concern me that I might not be getting paid either. Hmmm
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8509912].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author piney94
    The carpet guy was never billed - he tried to contact the domain holder multiple times over the last two years to arrange for payment and website suggestions - never heard from him. Not until I got involved for the transfer, did the domain guy start waking up. I've been paid 1/2 so far, so I'm motivated to deliver a good product and get paid the other half. The carpet guy and I have a good working relationship. Thanks for people's suggestions.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8510209].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author mojo1
      For future reference, you can always retrieve old website content that's been previously indexed and archived at the Wayback Machine here: web.archive.org

      You can also look up a website's "Home page" here at Screenshots.com as well.

      Never be held hostage for a websites content again.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8510958].message }}

Trending Topics