Discussion About Domain Names on Active Rain

There’s an interesting discussion about domain names in an Active Rain blog post that was written by Kathleen Daniels, a real estate broker in San Jose, California. In the article, Daniels briefly discusses her interaction with a domain broker regarding a domain name she is interested in buying. Daniels seeks feedback from others regarding the $14,000 asking price.

I’ve done several deals with real estate agents and companies in the real estate business. I have been a buyer and seller of US (city)RealEstate.com domain names and am still buying and selling them when great names are available at great prices. Because of my involvement in this vertical, I thought this article with over 75 comments is a great look into the minds of ¬†real estate agents regarding how they view domain names.

The first thing I noticed is that many people told Daniels that $14,000 for the domain name is too much money. To quote the first comment, “Yes, $14,000 is way too high!” I found this to be very strange considering the domain name was not revealed (probably smart to not share it for competitive reasons). This is almost like me asking, “Is $750,000 too much money to spend on a house?” and having people share their feedback without knowing whether the house is in Beverly Hills or Burbank! Obviously the quality of the domain name is the most important factor, so I am not sure how people can say that $14k is too much without knowing the name.

There are some people who did offer good advice in the comment section. Comment #39 is especially good: “Everything is dependent upon the return. Would I pay $14K for a great domain name? you bet…but it would have to really be good. One deal from a good domain can be more than the purchase price.” If the domain name mentioned by Daniels had dozens or hundreds of targeted visits per day, there is a chance she could make back her investment very quickly. If it’s a great domain name, there’s also burndown value in the future, meaning that the domain name could actually appreciate in value, and the owner can sell it in the future.

I’ve had good success with real estate domain names, and I’ve also had real estate domain names that wouldn’t sell for one reason or another. There have been times where I received a super low offer ($100) which was followed up by an offer of close to the asking price from someone else in the same market. Real estate agents look at domain names much differently than they do the real estate and properties they market. I’ve always found it a bit strange considering that I look at domain names as online real estate.

Interestingly, someone mentioned the .Realtor extension that will be coming out. I think we are probably going to see quite a few .Realtor domain names down the road, and I would bet that .Realtor will be one of the biggest dot brand success stories in the future.

Regardless of what you think of the comments made following the Active Rain article, I think it’s well worth a read to get an idea of how real estate agents think about domain names. You may also want to check out my article about negotiating with a real estate agent.

Thanks to TLDNetworks.com for sharing the article.

Elliot Silver
Elliot Silver
About The Author: Elliot Silver is an Internet entrepreneur and publisher of DomainInvesting.com. Elliot is also the founder and President of Top Notch Domains, LLC, a company that has closed eight figures in deals. Please read the DomainInvesting.com Terms of Use page for additional information about the publisher, website comment policy, disclosures, and conflicts of interest. Reach out to Elliot: Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn


  1. Hi Elliot,
    Nice Find. Selling to real estate agents is very difficult than most in my opinion. The top 20% do 80% of the sales and they are the ones with deep pockets but they are so accustomed to traditional marketing they don’t really care or understand the potential value in it. Also they are constantly bombarded with solicitation that they automatically assume its a scam. I have worked with a real estate agent who is a platinum seller (25MM sales per year) for 14 years running now and he does 99.99% of his business thru newspaper ads so its very difficult to pitch to him about the value of the domain names. Just my two cents..

  2. Well the domain she registered was Need Probate Realtor .com so is the shorter domain $14K to her, my guess is given what she took at hand reg, unless she sees a huge business upside from this segment within her own practice she will not upgrade for 5 figures.

    • I didn’t see that mentioned anywhere in the article or comments.

      Assuming that is the name, I would imagine most people who commented didn’t know the url either, so the idea of giving advice without the details is still pretty silly.

    • Well it wasn’t mentioned, that is one thing about being a domainer, you put clues together, and think outside the box, to form ideas.

  3. Ahh correction domain was Need Probate Help .com damn gtld’s mess with your head. Realtor is TM’d so newbies don’t even bother.

  4. If you guys take some time, and read thru the comments, it is funny how realtors think that it would be insane any domain name sell for $14K, and how that would be a new world record or something.

    They seem to attack domain brokers, yet they do the exact same thing? E real estate, and virtual real estate, no real difference, deed & title.

    This just shows me how far domains still have to go, seems many of them are aware of .realtor, as they keep referencing it to free.

  5. Yes, funny how realtors cannot imagine spending more than $10 on a domain yet they spend how much advertising their services via color printing, billboards (roadside & mobile), newspapers, television, radio, PPC. A city+homes domain may generate a valuable lead and can also promote that real estate agent/agency as an authority on homes in that area. A lesser quality domain may not have quite the same effect.

    With physical real estate individuals will pay more to live in certain areas because of the desired benefits of living in a certain location. Another location nearby is not nearly as desirable or perhaps not even acceptable at any price. Of course with domains there are alternatives and a domain investor can price themselves out of a potential sale if there is no reasonable justification for the price they are asking.

  6. Interesting, I just listed thousands city.homesandrealty sub domain addresses this weekend haven’t worked out lease price yet but will likely be on sliding scale like GTLD pricing with premiums leasing for more.

    Sub domain leasing might be an option for agents seeking vanity we address and vanity email

    • Some of these people were up in arms in spending $500 on a domain purchase, how do you expect them to pay rent for such a long string like that. Likely their offices could provide them with a more marketable agency domain. Others can give you their two cents, but good effort on the try, I do not feel your .com is strong enough to branch out like that.

  7. All you need to do is ask a Realtor if they ever had any one say to them. “I could have bought that property for $100,000 ten years ago and now they are asking a million for it”
    Its about positioning yourself for the future before someone else has taken that killer name and developed a website that gives them that competitive edge. Even when the .realtor comes out there will only be one city.realtor available. I personally like the “cityrealestate” dot com or dot ca

  8. In her case, I think her domain choice of NeedProbateHelp dot com vs Probate Help dot com for $14k was probably the right call. I agree with her assessment in the comments:

    “The domain name I did get will serve me equally well. The ROI will be on the entire site … more so on content than the domain name.”

  9. I read all the comments on active rain blog.
    Funny thing is i was talking to a rep at go daddy cause i had a problem with a domain i bought in there aftermarket auction and the rep was saying, At go daddy they have had a lot of people in the real estate industry looking for domains lately.
    She said they seem to like the word…luxury

  10. Really great discussion and comments. I appreciate the discussion on the real estate domain sector as pure geo and geo real estate type names are such a crucial niche type domains that most domainers have some of. Thank you Elliot.

    • As soon as a few of these realtors buy a .realestate gTLD and blast it on the real estate forums then more and more will jump on board. Of course their logic will be why buy whateverrealestate.com for 10 grand when I can register the same type for 100 bucks. The realtors are going to be the .realestate extensions best salesman. It will absolutely drop .com values. This extension is one that will be a big push for these new gTLDs because you will see them being used everywhere. It’s very easy marketing for a realtor to use these to promote listings and this is how the consumer will really understand new gTLDs. Examples below


      etc……….endless choices.

      .realtor is another one that will be huge because every single realtor will have one especially since they will be free to register. They will be promoted heavily within the real estate community. Smart move giving them away for free. They know that a realtor will register it because it’s free and will keep it and renew because it’s already in their account.

    • This is exactly what is going to happen including popular first name . Realtor, and last, what will be free, and available will be first and last name . Realtor.

      Can’t wait to hear them squabble when it does happen, we have seen reservations, hold backs, and premiums from every registry so far, why would .realtor be any different. Major push to change signage, business cards, and marketing materials.

      Why do you think the price of .com will be premium, because it won’t cost $250 – $5,000 a year in renewals.

    • No one outside of the National Association of Realtors will be able to register a .realtor domain. To maintain the domain you must continue to have a membership with them. All Geo .realtor domains will be held by the registry for future use to benefit all realtors together. This is a very unique extension because .realtor is actually owned by the realtor association so their main goal is not to make money with the registry but to support the association as a whole. Registration fees will be low and consistent. This registry is not about making money but is about making the association stronger within. They guard the realtor trademark like pit bulls for a reason.

      Elliot you are right that they will sell many of the .realestate domains for a premium but they will be cheaper than any .com on the market. The reason they will be successful is the real estate community as a whole will start to adopt these on a wide scale from personal websites, to property listings etc…. Which is going to make the adoption across the industry much faster and much more accepted which unfortunately will make .com values fall. As soon as they are accepted within the industry it will make it easier to promote to the consumer.

      Every .com that ends with the same ending as a new gTLD will be affected in a big way. Naturephotography.com’s price will drop because of Nature.photography, HollywoodRealEstate.com’s price will drop because of Hollywood.realestate and on down the line. If you have a domain that ends like this it will be affected.

      • The question is would someone rather potentially pay $x,xxx/year for a new .realestate name or buy an established cityRealEstate.com for 2-3x the price with a $10 annual renewal. IMO, the .com makes more sense, especially because it is well established.

        This is why I find the business so fascinating at this point in time.

  11. Anyone will want the .com over all others as long as it is affordable. But if the .com is 30 grand upfront and the same .realestate is $2,500 upfront with a couple grand a year in renewals then I think to most it would make sense to go with the latter and spread out the cost. Especially since every year these new more modern extensions will be more and more accepted. We just don’t know if in 5 years .com will be king or a dinosaur.

    The bottom line is how they are accepted by Google and treated in the actual search. If after a couple of years 50% of the first page is new extensions then say good bye to .com values and say hello to great returns on gTLDs. Until that time comes all we are doing is guessing.

  12. we also do quite a bit of real estate names, we sell to domain name investors mostly, who then sell to agents if they can. mostly on the few occasions i call agents i just tell myself ill know in the first 30 seconds if i have a prospect. If they have a Team, and a digital marketing manager, then its up to their preconceived notion about domains, i havent been able to change a naysayer, and if they get it usually my price looks pretty good.

    on .realtor, i think agents will realize they are just renting someone elses proprty with .realtor, always subject to “their” dues, terms and condition.

    plus, over 40 years it more likely a realtor has a negative view of the NAR than a positive one, and this is coming from someone whos aunt was once President in California.

    NAR, They walk a fine line, they want their word to be ubiquitous, yet maintain ownership TM rights. If the internet has shown us anything its that these old structures are usually disrupted…..my opinion, its a funky word, realtor, tough to add to an email address, com is pretty short and sweet.

    as far as i can tell , they wont give out geos in .realtor.

    best advice if you think realtors wont pay or all dont understand the value, call one and ask to buy their existing city+realestate.com name, then you’ll see the value real owners of these names place on them.

    happy hunting

    page howe

  13. Page makes a good point – if a real estate agent owns a cityrealestate.com domain, ask them how much they would sell it for? You think they will sell it for $50 then?

  14. no real estate agent is trained in marketing. All are independent contractors and when they use a shitty domain or big brand subdomain when they exit the business they have nothing but bills. with a 75% turnover rate. When they build a brand on a great domain they have value which can be sold and transferred to the next agent. Not one fuckin idiot understands this principal nationwide. This is why they are all failures and exit the business.
    when they use an extension .realestate .realtor they are behold to someone else not independent and creating value for themselves which can be sold.

    now what is a stupid real estate agent taught? build a farm, then cultivate it and you will reap the rewards..with circulators, targeted newspaper ads, and door hangers…bullshit from 30 yrs ago.

    with a great .com domain you get leads instead of paying google every month and have nothing to show for it. This is basic marketing 101 and no one understands this…this is why real estate agents are stupid, are independent contractors who would pay an idiot that does not comprehend strategic thinking? now go place a newspaper and sit for the phone to ring!

  15. What many real estate practitioners, and of course those who are novice on domaining, do not know is that domain names are virtual properties which are valuable based on certain criteria.


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