DAN.com

Is Escrow.com foolproof?

Located in Escrow Service Reviews, started by Brian Klug, Oct 13, 2020

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  1. Brian Klug

    Brian Klug Upgraded Member Blue Account

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    I've got my largest transaction coming in the pipe, around $20k.

    Is Escrow.com foolproof? My gut tells me nothing is foolproof and there can always be reasons a deal dies, even after they have paid. What if the money was stolen for example?

    Has anyone heard of a deal going through Escrow.com where a buyer paid, the seller got the money, then something went wrong from the buyers side still? and the deal was reversed or cancelled?

    (The buyer used a sketchy looking contact info and I'm on high alert.)
     
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  2. Gube

    Gube Coming soon Gold Account

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    Don't spend money you don't have yet in your bank ;)
    But something I've already seen is a deal taking place at Escrow and for some reasons, the verification process doesn't go well for one side and it fails at Escrow but the seller brings it at another escrow place like Dan or Epik just to name these two
     
  3. Ategy

    Ategy Arif M, NameCult.com TheDomainSocial.com VIP Gold Account

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    In my opinion Escrow.com isn't actually even an escrow service unless you (or the buyer) pays double the fees to get concierge service where there is a moment when Escrow.com actually hold BOTH the money and the domain. Because with their regular service, the buyer actually needs to go back after they have the domain to confirm they indeed received it. If they don't do this step for any reason (either because they are lazy, or they want to fraud you by pretending they never got the domain), then that can significantly complicate things.

    In fairness, in that situation I'm confident that Escrow.com would work towards trying to figure it all out, but it's always been a planet-sized loop-hole that for me completely goes against what "escrow" is defined to be. In fairness, while I've experienced a delay of multiple days because the buyer didn't confirm right away, I haven't heard of any instance where a transaction wasn't eventually completed because of this .. but it just something that really bothers me because it means the Escrow isn't theoretically secure or air-tight. I'm curious what they do when a client simply never bothers logging back into Escrow.com to confirm reception of the domain.

    All that aside .. while I'd suggest you actually get legal council to confirm the specifics for your specific jurisdiction, I'm pretty sure Escrow is not intended to protect you legally. Seems their role is simply to (try to) keep the transaction secure (again though .. their transactions actually aren't 100% secure based on the above).

    So yes .. if the domain was/is stolen, then after a legal process, the sale could be reversed .. or the domain could simply be taken from the buyer who in turn would need to sue the seller.

    That said, after a transaction is officially completed, I don't think Escrow would be involved in anything further. Unless perhaps there was legal action requesting they share the information of the people involved in the sales. But I'm pretty sure Escrow.com wouldn't be the entity that takes the money back from you, nor that they would be involved in that process. Again though .. don't take legal advice from anybody in a forum .. if you need to be 100% sure, seek legal council experienced on the subject.
     
  4. Escrow.com Support

    Escrow.com Support Established Member Escrow.com

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    Hi @Brian Klug

    It is correct that Escrow.com, as a licensed escrow company, only basically secures the funds between you (the Seller) and the Buyer until all the terms in your agreement are met. That means all the details of the domain transfer will have to be coordinated directly between you and your Buyer, and your respective registrars.

    Should the Buyer reject the domain during the inspection period, they will need to return the rejected merchandise for you to confirm receipt and acceptance (or rejection, as applicable) on your end as well. Regardless of the reason for rejection, the domain must be returned to you (the Seller) in order for funds to be returned to the Buyer, and must be arranged and completed within ten (10) days of Buyer's rejection. Failure of Buyer to return the domain specified in your Escrow.com transaction within the specified time period will cause Escrow.com to automatically pay you the purchase price. We also have a Dispute process should you reject the returned merchandise/domain. (More details about these in Sections 5, 7 and 10 in the General Escrow Instructions here.)

    With that said, yes, we do have a concierge service which @Ategy mentioned above and would be the best option for you (only available for domain transfers without content), which gives you added protection such that our Concierge specialists will assist you in transferring the domain to one of Escrow.com's registrar accounts and we'll also be the ones contacting the Buyer to get their receiving registrar details in your behalf. The advantage for you as Seller is that there's no need to wait for the Buyer to confirm receipt and full control of the domain before the funds are released. With the Concierge Service, you will only need to transfer the domain to our secured registrar account and we will take care of the rest to your Buyer essentially.

    We agree that Escrow.com assumes no responsibility for the legality of the transaction, so we also recommend to seek legal advice as needed prior to starting a transaction.

    Nevertheless, in either case (with or without concierge service), your protection as Seller in using our escrow services is that we will notify you to start the domain transfer ONLY once funds are approved and secured with us, that is, after the Buyer completes payment/account verification.

    Hope this helps. Feel free to send us a DM here or email [email protected] regarding our Concierge service and for any other questions you may have.
     
  5. Brian Klug

    Brian Klug Upgraded Member Blue Account

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    1) So, under the normal process (not concierge), what does happen if a buyer simply never logs back in to confirm receipt of the domain? Or if they claim I sent it to someone else (but they put WHOIS privacy on)?

    2) With the concierge service, it sounds like the domain is transferred twice, once to Escrow.com, again to buyer. Does this mean the process adds 60 days because of transfer locks? Unless account pushes are used in some cases?

    3) When someone starts a checkout on escrow.com/checkout, I have a feature request. Can you please NOT start a transaction until you have verified the buyers email? I'm tired of junk transactions, people that don't intend to buy the domain, fill out the form with made up information, and hit submit. Please email them a link and have them verify their account BEFORE sending me an e-mail getting me all excited that I'm getting thousands of dollars ... from "asdfasdfasdf" at "[email protected]" ... [email protected]%^#$.

    (At the very least, try e-mailing them first, and if the e-mail bounces, cancel the transaction and don't notify the seller until 10 min later. Thank you!)
     
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2020 at 1:40 PM
  6. Ategy

    Ategy Arif M, NameCult.com TheDomainSocial.com VIP Gold Account

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    This is actually why Escrow.com is not actually a real Escrow service when it comes to domains .. unless you pay DOUBLE their fees to get concierge service.

    That said, I wouldn't be too worried as I'm pretty sure with the industry connections Escrow.com has, most issues would eventually be sorted out. But I'll let @Escrow.com Support / @Escrow.com give their official answer, as I've been curious about that myself, and very curious as to how they can market their non-concierge service as an "Escrow Service", when in fact the assets are not secured by them in any way.

    What's more, with their concierge service they charge 6.5% PLUS payment processing fees of 3.05% PLUS even more extra fees to send you your money ($25 if you aren't in the USA). So on a $1000 domain they are actually collecting over 12% in fees. All that to not even get an automated instant process like you would with several registrars.

    I'm pretty sure at @epik (@Epik.com) it's 9% AND the transaction is "instant" if your domain is registered there. In some situations it's even less (although I'm not sure of the exacts .. please confirm @Rob Monster / @Sufyan Alani). At @DAN.COM I think it's 5% although admittedly I'm not sure how smooth/instant their process is (@LaszloSchenk please confirm).

    @Escrow.com has made the argument that registrars are not legal "escrow" services. In cases where registrars are slow to transfer/pay then there is a tiny chance they could go bankrupt in that window of time. But with some registrars (like Epik for example), the reality is that with instant transactions, it doesn't matter, as they would need to go bankrupt within the fraction of a second it takes for them to make the money<>domain switch between your and the buyer's accounts.

    That said .. where Escrow.com theoretically does deliver extra legal protection is when you do a payment plan. The real benefit of "Escrow", is that the assets (both money and domain) are protected and separate from the assets of the escrow service (Escrow.com in this case). So if Escrow.com were to go bankrupt in the middle of your transaction, your assets would still legally belong to you (would likely still be a mess to figure out how to conclude the payment plan, but at least the domain wouldn't be liquidated to Escrow.com debtees/creditors).

    Whereas in theory if you have a payment plan with a non-escrow company (most if not all registrars), then depending on their legal/accounting structure, your domain could be seized by creditors if the registrar goes bankrupt (whether or not you do or don't have a legal option at that point would really be beyond what I could say either way for sure and could even be different depending on your jurisdiction).

    While it sounds like I'm dumping on Escrow.com, they definitely can be an asset to you as a domainer. For most domainers who only do inbound sales, it's usually the buyer who pays the fees, so the fact that Escrow.com's fees are truly excessive in some cases actually doesn't actually affect you. I've personally used Escrow.com for some of my sales and I'm happy they are there as one of many tools and alternatives available to us in order to help us close sales.

    Also, the fact that they secure the money for you isn't nothing. While it is not in any way a real escrow service because they don't also simultaneously secure the domain (unless you pay double fees), it still is a significant layer of protection. Also, while their service is vastly slower than "instant" or "fast" transfers, they do offer very competent and friendly service in a timely manner.

    Again, while my comments sound negative because their regular service actually is not a real escrow service, I'll also point out that I do not recall of hearing of a single instance where the seller has not ended up with the money owed to them, or has had the domain returned to them.

    Oddly enough their strongest asset has nothing to do with their actual service, but more to do with their "Escrow.com" brand and the perceived protection. So the biggest irony of all is that Escrow.com is probably the best example you could ever give of how a domain name brings authority .. their domain actually allows them to pretend to be an escrow service when in fact the main service they offer is not a true two-way escrow! lol

    All that said .. again .. there are potential legal matters neither registrars nor any escrow can protect you from. Namely if the assets within the transaction were previously stolen. For example, if you sold a domain that you acquired legally, but the previous owner had stolen, then you could still be sued by the person who bought it from you. Escrow services can't protect you from that.


    Escrow.com has accounts at most registrars. It really is as simple as a push to their account at the current registrar (after they secured the funds. Once you done done your push to Escrow.com's concierge service, be sure to reach out to them for your payment. In one of my previous transactions with "concierge service" I was incorrectly told I need to wait for the buyer to secure the domain. But once I pointed out that 100% of my responsibilities had been concluded in the transaction, they quickly released the funds to me (the only reason I went with concierge service in the first place).
     
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2020 at 4:27 PM
  7. Rob Monster

    Rob Monster CEO, Epik Epik.com Staff PRO VIP

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    Topic was discussed at length here:

    https://www.namepros.com/threads/if...escrow-you-are-wasting-time-and-money.1119508

    If domain is at Epik and buyer pays via wire transfer, no fee.

    I believe we are the world leader in crypto domain escrow.

    For non-crypto, fees are also competitive.

    More here:

    https://escrow.epik.com/

    The 9% rate you are referring to is for a marketplace sale where we bring the lead. We also help customers close deals. It is a great value for what it is, since we often help folks get higher prices.

    Landing pages are free, and provide the registrant with full contact details.
     
  8. Escrow.com Support

    Escrow.com Support Established Member Escrow.com

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    1. If the Buyer never logs in to confirm receipt and you confirm that you still have possession or complete control of the domain (sending proof of ownership, etc.), this will be checked by our review team and you can request to cancel the transaction if it's no longer pushing through. Our phone support may also help calling the Buyer to check the status and we can give final notices, as needed, if they continue to be unresponsive. If the Buyer claims it was sent to someone else, you just need to send us documentation and any supporting proof of transfer and/or with acknowledgements from both parties about the transfer for our review team to check as well. Once reviewed and approved, we can start the inspection period in your behalf (only for domain transfers without content, as we will not be able to verify if the domain is with content, other assets involved, etc.) Typically, we request both users to copy [email protected] with your correspondences from your respective registered email addresses associated with the transaction so we can have them noted as reference.

    2. That's correct. After both parties have completed verification and the funds are secured, our Concierge specialists will reach out to you (Seller) with instructions prior to transferring the domain to Escrow.com's secured registrar accounts (we have an account in most registrars and can open one for you, as needed). Generally, we would ask you not to change the registrant information. According to our Concierge Team Lead, it depends on where the domain is held but you do have the option to opt out from the 60-day lock prior to beginning the transfer request. It is actually going to be specified that it is very important you do not make any changes to the WHOIS, or any part of the registration as this could result in a transfer lock being imposed by ICANN. As soon as we have full control of the domain, we can release the funds to you the same or following business day and you don't need to wait or worry about the details of transferring the domain to the Buyer as our Concierge team will take care of that.

    3. As for the email addresses, this goes back to the step where prior to securing the funds, both parties will need to complete KYC first. That said, our Concierge team will not give you instructions to begin the domain transfer until both parties have completed verifications and that the funds are approved and secured with us. We are also working on continuing to improve our verification procedures and automated emails so we'll take note of these suggestions as these are highly appreciated. We encourage you to always copy [email protected] in any of your correspondences with the Buyer so these are noted and recorded in your transaction.

    Hope this answers your questions. Our DM is open for anything else. :)
     
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2020 at 2:58 AM
  9. LaszloSchenk

    LaszloSchenk Upgraded Member Dan.com Staff Blue Account

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    Good morning,

    Thank you for involving us in this thread.

    I can confirm that if you use DAN.COM for a transfer only service the total commission is 5%. The majority of the domain extensions can be transferred instantly at DAN.COM. The process is designed in such a way that you as a seller could import a transaction. Once the buyer submits the payment you are asked to transfer/push the domain to our holding account and will receive your payout within 24 hours. Depending on the time of initiating the transaction one could already receive his/her payout within a few hours after delivering the domain.

    Once the domain is delivered, we will assign a dedicated account manager to your buyer who in turn will guide him/her through the process. Depending on their response time we could already deliver the domain within 24 hours as well. We frequently see sales conclude in full within a matter of 1-2 hours already.

    Have a great day.
     
  10. blogspotter

    blogspotter Top Contributor VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    I made my first big sale in 2009 and it was for 32K. They sent me a check and while it took a while to clear the check, My local bank sending it Citibank NY et al (due to local banking rules in my country), the whole transaction went pretty smooth. When I suggested escrow, the buyer also didn't have any hesitation.

    If I were a very new buyer today, I would trust Escrow over some company I never heard of before. Maybe it is the example of a great domain name. A category defining domains.

    But I keep seeing discontentment from some domainers.
    I think escrow.com should not squander away the built-in trust and reliability and try to at least keep with up with competition.. And listen to the industry.
     
  11. FairTrial

    FairTrial Established Member Transpact Staff

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    There are three types of domain escrow company:

    1) Those that hold the domain and the payment in escrow (very secure and most expensive)
    2) Those that only hold the payment in escrow and require you (both buyer & seller) to follow their domain handling rules (expensive)
    3) Those that only hold the payment in escrow, but allow you to set the rules and triggers for your individual domain transaction (very low cost and most secure if you set the rules and triggers correctly).

    The discussion above only mentions escrow firm types 1) and 2) where the domain rules are imposed on you by the escrow company, but type 3) should also be seriously considered by all those who do not yet utilise it.

    [Type 3) can easily be turned into a type 1) scenario if the escrow rules you set mention a separate trusted third-party to separately hold, inspect and transfer the domain.]
     
  12. s.g

    s.g Established Member

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    Are you still with Epik? (Just drawing a prospective networking map for now. Trying to figure out who is who at this early "Let's make just a single phone call a day" stage.)
     
  13. JB Lions

    JB Lions Top Contributor VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    What exactly does a new buyer to your system have to do/send in? Specifically? I have a new buyer that is getting frustrated but I have no idea what they have to do on their end.

    Thanks.
     
  14. asxforum

    asxforum Top Contributor VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    epik.com/escrow is the best
     
  15. Gube

    Gube Coming soon Gold Account

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    I'm not, thus recommending both escrow platforms I use, Dan and Epik last
     
  16. Mytz.com

    Mytz.com Top 4L [email protected] IEIE.com CUTU.com NESU.com KKIK.com VIP Gold Account

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    Won't,
    You think too much,
    If you're worried about that and you go to the broker,
    EPIK.COM,DAN.COM, they're all very good,
    It's not expensive
     
  17. cornell

    cornell VCW.COM, BJR.COM FOR SALE Blue Account

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    Agree
     
  18. s.g

    s.g Established Member

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    Thanks. Good to know (some NP members believe you are still with Epik).

    If there was one issue you could name when it comes to DAN, what would it be?

    PM okay too, of course. Thanks for your time and expertise.
     
  19. Escrow.com Support

    Escrow.com Support Established Member Escrow.com

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    Hi @JB Lions, we sent you a DM so we can review and help check what else is needed from the Buyer's side with your specific transaction. Thanks!
     
  20. JB Lions

    JB Lions Top Contributor VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    @Jackson Elsegood
    @Escrow.com Support

    Does your Payments team work weekends? Doesn't seem like you have phone support on weekends.

    Also:

    "What exactly does a new buyer to your system have to do/send in? Specifically?"

    I've never gotten that question answered anywhere. I've asked a couple of times thru email, nothing.

    It is more than:

    Government issued ID, Proof of address

    And are there different levels of verification a buyer needs to go thru based on sale amount? If so, what amounts. I need to know this info for the future, so I can let buyers know beforehand, so they don't get frustrated and caught off guard.
     
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2020 at 8:05 AM

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