Subscription expired now DH is demanding money


#1

I took out a one year shared hosting incl domain registration plan which was cheap as chips. I barely used the plan as I was in the process of learning WP and in the end decided to host locally on my machine instead. I’m one of these people who doesn’t even work in IT and am just doing it on and off as a hobby.

Now I’m getting emails saying that they were unable to take funds for a further year’s service which I didn’t want anyway. Like most services the minute you don’t pay they cut you off. DH seem to cling on annoyingly and won’t even allow you to close off the hosting plan unless you pay up the balance…DON’T THEY GET THE HINT, IF I VALUED AND WANTED THE SERVICE I WOULD HAVE PAID BY NOW !!!

Considering you cannot even turn off the auto-renew for the service anyway I think this is an incredible cheek especially when they don’t forewarn you about this when you sign up or even send reminders that you must close the account exactly on the day when your year is up to avoid charges. Sorry DH but I’ve got a life and I’m not going to be calendar watching. They now expect me to cough up $50 all in before I can properly close the plan. Well DH you can take a running jump as regards payment I’ll be looking elsewhere in future for my hosting.


#2

My experience of this problem:

Message 1:

[quote]Hello Dreamhost Support. I would like my hosting plan to terminate when the current subscription runs out. So, I tried to edit the plan settings so that it does not auto-renew. However, there does not appear to be an option to switch off auto-renew.

Please could you ensure that my hosting plan terminates when the subscription runs out and you do not re-bill me.

Thanks.

By the way, no complaints! I hope to remain as a Dreamhost customer (of your registration services, for example). I just want to stop the hosting plan.[/quote]

Reply 1:

[quote]Hello …,

You must cancel the service in your panel on the date you wish the
service to stop.

Please login to your panel, then go to Billing > Manage Accounts. Click
on the “close account/end all hosting” link. During the account closure
process, you will be asked if you wish to keep the registrations. Make
sure to check this option. Once that is done, you will be able to manage
the domain registrations and dns in the panel.

Thanks![/quote]

Message 2:

[quote]Hello …,

Thank you for your reply.

I’ve tried doing what you suggest, which is “close account/end all
hosting” from the panel, but before letting me do that the system
wants me to pay for my free domain registration which will no longer
be free.

So obviously it would be better to keep the account open until the
subscription runs out. Please could you set it so that it terminates
at that point and you do not re-bill me for renewal?

Thanks![/quote]

Reply 2:

[quote]Hello,

We aren’t able to set a future termination date to close an account. I’m
afraid that it may be best to go ahead and close the account and manage
the domain registrations accordingly.

Sorry about that, but let us know if there’s another question.

Sincerely, …[/quote]

Message 3:

[quote]Thanks for your reply, but I still don’t understand how best to
proceed. Basically, my question is: given that I don’t owe Dreamhost
anything, how do I simply close my account, or let it run out, without
thereby incurring a charge?

Much appreciating your help.[/quote]

Reply 3:

[quote]Hello,

Thank you for contacting DreamHost Support!

I see that your Happy Hosting plan will autorenew on 1/31/2015. You can
wait until that day to cancel your account and you should not be charged
for the domain. You can then cancel in the panel under Billing and
Account > Manage account.

Let us know if you have any more questions.

Thanks again,[/quote]

Message 4:

[quote]Thank you again for your reply. Well, I tried doing what you
suggested, but it didn’t work as expected. Choosing the time
carefully on Jan 31st (yesterday) so that it would be the correct day
in all possibly relevant timezones (especially Pacific) I tried “close
account/end all hosting”. Again the system refused.

Today you have re-billed me for an extra year’s hosting. As I
mentioned, I do not want that. Please close my hosting plan. If you
wish, you may remove my panel account altogether, I don’t mind.
Thanks.[/quote]

Reply 4:

[quote]Hello …,

My apologies for the trouble!

When you tried to cancel the service, you stated, that you were refused?
Could you please be more detailed, so that we can further investigate
this issue.

Your hosting did renew today, but as long as you cancel the service, you
will not actually need to make a payment.

However, the account must be cancelled within your panel.

Please do let me know, so that I can get you get your issue resolved.

Thanks![/quote]

Message 5:

[quote]Hello …,

Thanks for your reply. Here are [the details]. When I followed your instructions, the system responded:

"Your Current Account Balance: $0

You will have to pay for your free domain registration if you cancel
your hosting account now though, meaning there will be a charge of
$11.95 added to your account.

You are not within our 97 day money back guarantee (it has been 3916
days since 2004-05-13)!

To end your hosting now, you must submit an additional $11.95 to pay
off your account.

We’re sorry, but because you will owe $11.95 after closing your
account, we must ask you to first go make a payment for that amount.

After you have, you may return here to complete closing your account."

So my question is the same as before: given that I don’t owe Dreamhost
anything, how do I simply close my account, or let it run out, without
thereby incurring a charge?

Much appreciating your continuing help![/quote]

Reply 5:

[quote]Hello …,

My apologies for the trouble!

The reason you were being charged then is because you had used the free
registration last year on 02-01-2014. So you would have had to wait till
02-01-2015 to cancel the hosting to not be charged the free registration.

You should be able to cancel the service now without being charged for
the free registration.

Please go ahead and try doing that in your panel now and let me know if
you continue to be charged.

Thanks![/quote]

Message 6:

[quote]Today it is saying

"You Currently Owe: $119.40

However, if you close your account you will get a credit of $119.40
for unused services you’ve already been billed for.
You will have to pay for your free domain registration if you cancel
your hosting account now though, meaning there will be a charge of
$11.95 added to your account.

You are not within our 97 day money back guarantee (it has been 3918
days since 2004-05-13)!

To end your hosting now, you must submit an additional $11.95 to pay
off your account.

We’re sorry, but because you will owe $11.95 after closing your
account, we must ask you to first go make a payment for that amount.

After you have, you may return here to complete closing your account."

Thanks for your help[/quote]

Reply 6:

[quote]Hello …,

Well hell! This should have worked…

Anyway, go ahead and cancel now, I added a credit of $11.95 on your
account, so you should be set.

Please do let me know if you have any further trouble though.

Thanks![/quote]

Message 7:

[quote]Great, that now worked. Only thing is, my account has now arrived at
a state where I can’t use it to manage domain registrations unless I
re-open a hosting plan. On the panel, the Main Menu item “Domains” is
omitted, and the Toolbox item “Manage Domains” is greyed out. This is
not what I expected. Please could you check and either re-instate the
missing Main Menu item “Domains”, or confirm that this is not possible
unless I re-open a hosting plan?

Thank you, much appreciating your help![/quote]

Reply 7:

[quote]Hello,

Thank you for contacting DreamHost Support!

I reviewed your account and see that you are not able to manage the
domains in the panel because they are not registered with DreamHost. I
performed a whois lookup at whois.net for some of your domains on the
account and see that several have been registered with www.[registrar].net.
Here is one example: …

You will want to contact the domain registrar to manage the domains with
them. You can certainly transfer the domains to us if you choose and this
will allow you to manage the registrations through the panel without
hosting. Here is a link that explains the domain registration transfer
process:

http://wiki.dreamhost.com/Transfer_your_domain_registration_to_us

You can also reopen the account by adding a hosting plan in the panel by
going to Billing and Account > manage Account. Under the account
name/number click the link “add hosting to reopen account.” Should you
have any other questions please let us know.

Thanks again,[/quote]

Message 8:

[quote]Hello …, thanks for your reply, and thanks for looking at the
situation. However, regarding what you are saying, I have to say that
I already knew this. The domain registrations which Dreamhost has
under my account are all “zombie” registrations which shouldn’t
actually be there and somehow the system didn’t cope correctly when
they were transferred away. Doesn’t matter. What the issue is, is
this:

My account has now arrived at a state where I can’t use it to register
new domains. On the panel, the Main Menu item “Domains” is omitted,
and the Toolbox item “Manage Domains” is greyed out. This is not what
I expected. Please could you check and either re-instate the missing
Main Menu item “Domains”, or confirm that this is not possible unless
I re-open a hosting plan?

Thanks![/quote]

Reply 8:

[quote]Hi there,

Thank you for contacting DreamHost!

i apologize for the delay. You were unable to access the Domains tab
because your account was closed. I have reopened the account for you. You
can now purchase new domains in the panel under Domains > Registrations.
This will allow you to manage your domains in the panel without a hosting
plan. However, you can still add hosting again if you choose.

Let us know if you have more questions.

Thanks again,[/quote]


#3

Hi GusGF,

Our sincere apologies for this inconvenience. It is not our intention to cling and annoy you with our auto-renewal as this was implement to keep customers from getting their service interrupted. It is easier to turn off a service if not needed than turning the service back on with chances of lost data. We understand how you feel and we are sorry for causing you any trouble.

We can help you close your account now and waive any hosting fees that was not intended for use so you can properly close your account. Please accept our apology.

I have emailed your directly to your primary account address with more details, please respond directly there with any further questions or concerns.

Thank you!


#4

Thank you for getting in contact and helping to sort this out. I have learn’t a lesson to not assume billing will end on expiry of plan but it’s definitely naughty to disable the auto renewal of web hosting services. As a result I’ve had to pay you for my domain for another year which I wasn’t particularly interested on hanging on to.

The original promotion I signed up for last year was adequate for me since my usage was very very low and in the end I hosted my practice site locally anyway. I just couldn’t justify paying the fees you were asking on that basis.

:slight_smile:


#5

This is a trick DreamHost must pull regularly as I’ve had the same complaint. DreamHost charged me for a multi-year renewal that I never asked for. In fact, I purposefully allowed my hosting to lapse because I didn’t want to auto-renew. But DreamHost did it for me - with no consent on my part. Now they’re trying to bill me several hundred dollars before they’ll let me have my domain name back.

Take note, potential Dreamhost users. If you’re uncomfortable with facing a bill you didn’t expect, just say no to Dreamhost.


#6

Hello unhappy customer, it would be fantastic if you could be more precise.

“Now they’re trying to bill me several hundred dollars before they’ll let me have my domain name back.”

Note that a registrar may decline a transfer request until unpaid registration fees have been settled, but not for any other debt-related reason.

(There are other valid reasons for declining a transfer, maybe your case falls under one of them, it’s hard to tell from the information in your post.)