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Domain name escrow price and services guide

A comparison of popular domain name escrow options.

The domain name escrow landscape has changed in recent years. is under new ownership, Payoneer has added a service and some escrow services have closed.

With this in mind, I spent some time comparing the services based on features, payment options and fees.

I limited my analysis to, Payoneer and (the latter being a legal service of Greenberg & Lieberman). You might consider other services for secure domain transactions including those offered by Sedo and Afternic.

Each escrow service has different fees both for the overall transaction and the methods of payment. Here’s a comparison: Payoneer
Payments accepted:
Wire Yes – free Yes – free Yes – $20
ACH or equivalent No Yes – free Yes – $5
Credit Card Yes – 3.05% fee Yes – 3.00% fee Yes – 3.5% + $.20
PayPal Yes – 3.05% fee No Yes – 3.00%+$.30 (U.S.), 4.70% (non-U.S.)
Check/Money Order Yes – free No Yes – $5
Bitcoin No No Yes – $5
Payment restrictions $5,000 limit on credit/PayPal. Credit only accepted if one party has completed an transaction before. $2,000 limit on check/money order $2,000 limit on credit cards. Some payment options will be added shortly.
Disbursement options:
Domestic Wire Yes – $10 Yes – $15 Yes – $20
International Wire Yes – $20 Yes – $15 Yes – $40
ACH/Equivalent Yes – free Yes – free Yes – $5
PayPal No No Yes – PP fees
Check No No Yes – $10
Bitcoin No No $100 + network fee
Cancellation fees Buyer pays fees if cancellation after payment made No cancellation fees No cancellation fees
Currencies USD, EUR USD (EUR and GBP soon) USD, BTC
Other features Broker transactions, domain leasing/holding Broker transactions, domain leasing/holding. Payments can be made to Payoneer accounts. SEPA in EU and BACS in UK for disbursements. Broker transactions, legal assistance options

Many people will look at just the bottom line cost of using an escrow service. But there’s a lot more to it than that, and I hope the above table sheds some light on this. You should also consider licensing, which can vary from location to location, as well as service and ease-of-use.

But money matters, so I put together a chart comparing how much it costs to do a transaction at various dollar levels at each service. Other than the first line, which assumes a credit card is used for payment, each one assumes the cheapest option is selected for depositing funds and withdrawing funds and both parties are in the U.S. I added $5 to each one for because that is its cheapest option (ACH), but it also offers a free wallet service to hold onto your funds for future transactions.

Transaction amount Payoneer
$1,500 CC 94.5 67.5 106.45
1500 48.75 22.5 53.75
5000 162.5 75 167.5
10000 175.5 125 180.5
50000 445 525 450
100000 890 900 895

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Author: Andrew Allemann

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