Can DreamHost Make Your Hosting Dreams Come True In 2020? We Review

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Our Verdict: Most Generous Money-Back Guarantee

Dreamhost is known for its 97-day money-back guarantee. They also offer a variety of plans, ranging from shared and WordPress hosting, right up to dedicated servers for high-traffic sites.

Click any of the links in this review to get a special discount on any Dreamhost plan.


  • Customer support is available 24/7
  • User-friendly custom control panel
  • Fast site speeds with SSD servers


  • Site migration from a cPanel host could be tricky
  • No reseller plans

Over 250 customers rate Dreamhost 4.0 out of 5 stars, praising its excellent customer support, ease of use and solid uptime.

Is Dreamhost Right for Your Website?

Looking for something specific? Jump to our most popular sections:

  • Expert review - our in-depth analysis by hosting specialist, Claire Broadley
  • Customer reviews - see what real Dreamhost customers have to say
  • Hosting plans - compare plans and pricing
  • FAQs - answers to the most common questions about Dreamhost

DreamHost Introduction

DreamHost has been an independent web hosting company since it was founded in 1997 with offices in Los Angeles and Brea in California, and Portland, Oregon.

Over the years, DreamHost has become famous for its generous 97-day money-back guarantee for Shared hosting plans. It has introduced cloud hosting and computing services to broaden its portfolio, and improve reliability.

Most of DreamHost's packages are marketed to individuals and startups.

It provides room to grow, with dedicated servers and VPS hosting, and it also supports e-commerce.

Hosting Services And Plans

Let's run through the hosting plans offered by DreamHost, with quick mentions of performance, features, and resource allocations.

Shared Hosting

DreamHost's strength has always been in the shared hosting market, and it continues to offer shared hosting today.

The 100% uptime guarantee will be attractive for small businesses. Resources are also unlimited/unmetered on all but the cheapest plan: storage, bandwidth, email accounts, and domains have no cap.

For WordPress users, DreamHost offers both pre-installed and manual one-click installs. Also, you can choose automatic updates.

WordPress Hosting

Speaking of WordPress, if you only run it, DreamHost offers either shared or fully managed WordPress hosting services alongside its conventional web hosting plans.

SSL certificates are pre-installed with hosting plans.

DreamHost says that it's a lot faster than regular shared hosting, and it scales to cope with spikes in traffic. The cheapest and unmanaged "Starter" plan costs as little as $2.59 per month and comes with unmetered bandwidth, 50 GB storage, and a free domain name.

For "Unlimited" plans, customers get unmetered storage and unlimited storage, email, and websites.

WordPress Hosting Plans

DreamHost proves to be a worthy contender as a WordPress hosting provider with a total of five different plans to choose from:

Shared StarterShared UnlimitedDreamPressDreamPress PlusDreamPress Pro
Free SSLAvailAvailPre-instPre-instPre-inst
Free JetPack Pro
On-Demand Backups
WordPress Support
Lowest Price *$2.59$5.95$16.95$24.95$71.95
* Prices are based on 3-year (unmanaged) and 1-year (managed) contracts

VPS Hosting, Dedicated Servers, and Reseller Plans

DreamHost's managed VPS plans start at $10 per month for 1 GB of memory and 30 GB storage. Their top plans are $80 per month for 8 GB of memory and 240 GB storage.

These plans include a free trial of DreamHost's MySQL VPS add-on. This service places your MySQL databases on their own server for improved load times. If you want to keep the service, you'll need to pay $15 per month after the trial.

DreamHost also offers unmanaged Cloud VPS plans starting at $4.50 per month.

The fully-managed dedicated server plan priced at $149.00 per month includes:

  • 4-Core Intel Xeon CPU
  • 4 GB memory
  • 1 TB HDD RAID 1 storage
  • Local MySQL Database Server
  • Ubuntu

DreamHost doesn't sell a reseller package, but you can allocate certain chunks of your account to other users. This model may not suit you if you plan to run a full reseller hosting business.

Additional Services And Features

DreamHost squeezes in a handful of useful features alongside its hosting plans.

Website Builder

The Remixer website builder plans are designed for those looking to get their websites up and running with little to no coding and immediately. They are reasonably priced, starting at $4.95 per month and include:

  • Unlimited websites and pages
  • Mobile-friendly pages
  • Free domain name
  • 24/7 support
  • Email accounts (premium only)

Domain Registrar and Email Hosting

Other services include:

  • A domain registrar with over 400 top-level-domains available. DreamHost throws in a domain management service and free private domain registrations with this bundle.
  • Email hosting plans can be purchased at $1.67 per month and include a 25 GB mailbox, IMAP support, and advanced security features like spam, virus, and phishing protection.
  • WooCommerce hosting is another available option under DreamHost's managed WordPress hosting with free migration services, SSL certificates, and 1-click restore backups included.

Looking for the best DreamHost deal?
Use our special discount link today and save up to 30% on DreamHost plans. Includes 97-day money-back guarantee.

Continued after user reviews

Dreamhost Reviews by Our Community

Overall Rating from 276 Reviews by Dreamhost Customers


Most Helpful Reviews

Natalie Mootz
Aug 07, 2019

I've been with Dreamhost for over 10 years and I've never had a reason to want to switch. Their customer support has been able to help me with any problems I've had - and there haven't been any that weren't self-inflicted. They are extremely responsive via email and chat.

What's wonderful is that they understand WHY you want to do a thing, so they're not just drones pasting in canned answers. For example, I had a couple of self-hosted sites. When I lost my job and was cutting back expenses, I couldn't even afford the $10/month hosting I was paying.

However, my sister had a Dreamhost hosting plan and she offered to host my sites on her account. I was upfront and explained all this to customer support. They totally understood and walked me through the entire process of moving my sites over to my sister's hosting account. (All this for free, mind you, they didn't get any money out of it.

In fact, they lost my monthly hosting fee!)

Although their domain renewals aren't super cheap (~$16/year), you can renew them any way you like: automatic renewals, don't renew, or ask me. If you choose "ask me" they'll shoot you an email a month ahead of time so you can have a chance to move the domain if you want. (I never want.)

It should be noted that my sites are all WordPress and I don't do any development so I can't speak to any super-technical setups. Dreamhost's 1-click WP install works right out of the box so I just click and go. I recommend them without reservation.

Visit Host Now →

Davdi French
Nov 19, 2018

Love Dreamhost. They're great. Sometimes I wish there was a little bit better organization to their UI, they don't use cPanel and the panel they use instead is a bit odd at times, but I think that's mostly just preference.

What they're great at, and the most important thing to me, is their customer service. It's dope. It's amazing.

The best. I can get in contact via a chat window with a tech within 5 ten minutes no problem, give a brief explanation of my issue and they will help me fix whatever I'm having trouble with, no issue. Also they have a great API that makes DNS management easy, and a very accessible and well written knowledge base that is SEO.

Visit Host Now →

Warner Blake
Nov 03, 2018

In 1996, the Seattle Art Museum and Microsoft funded a program to help artists create and host a website which I did for my nonprofit organization, Pstoo (Puppet Soup Theater of Objects). Still had the website when the program ended, but no host - that's when Dreamhost stepped up with free hosting for nonprofits! Think I discovered Dreamhost around the same time I was embracing WordPress, circa 2005. We have been a team since then, even before they began throwing parties in Seattle.

Visit Host Now →

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DreamHost Control Panel

DreamHost has always rejected third-party control panels like cPanel and Plesk. Instead, it has its own proprietary panel. This panel allows you to control most of the same technical aspects of a hosting account, and it's provided free with every hosting package.

This consistency means that many users have grown to love the custom panel.

How Can I Import Data From Other Control Panels?

There is one important thing to remember. DreamHost does not have a way to import data from other panels. If you need to transfer from a cPanel host, for example, you will need to manually migrate your files and databases.

Additionally, you can't import your email from a cPanel backup file. You will need to recreate each email address, download the mail from your old host via IMAP, and manually drag it into your DreamHost mailbox using a desktop mail application.

DreamHost will transfer your data for you, however. This some plans, this is included. Otherwise, it costs $99 per website.

This isn't a reason to reject DreamHost. But be aware of its unusual approach before committing to a contract.

DreamHost Datacenters

DreamHost uses datacenters on the east and west coasts of the US. Customers can't choose their datacenter at checkout. However, they can have it changed via support.

One advantage that DreamHost has is that its staff are physically close to some of its machines at all times. So it can get that crucial hands-on access that's sometimes needed, without the need to rely on third-party remote hands.

Technical Support

DreamHost operates its own in-house customer support team, with support staff available 24/7 to assist customers.

Customers can open a ticket through the DreamHost control panel, and there's also a form on the website. The account area also has a live chat facility which is not available to non-customers.

There are a variety of self-help categories available in the Dreamhost knowledgebase and forums.

You can't contact DreamHost support by phone unless it offers a callback to assist. It does have a large knowledgebase, and a huge customer support forum stretching back for many years.

Uptime and Service Guarantees

DreamHost offers an excellent 100% uptime guarantee across all hosting packages. Credit is provided for downtime, using a simple calculation: 1 day of credit for 1 hour of downtime.

However, this is capped at a maximum of 10% of your hosting fee. Downtime only officially begins when you open a support ticket, so if you suspect network problems, it's a good idea to act quickly.

Money-Back Guarantee For Shared Hosting Accounts

The guarantee only applies to accounts paid for using a credit card.

One of DreamHost's key selling points is its 97-day money-back guarantee.

It's one of the longest guarantee periods you'll find at any hosting company, and it gives you time to try out its control panel without commitment.

DreamHost Pros and Cons

Let's cover the strengths and weaknesses of DreamHost as a hosting provider before we proceed into the depths of the review.


  • Free domains and SSL certificates
  • Generous money-back guarantee
  • Large selection of premium services
  • Reasonably priced web hosting.


  • Extended money-back guarantee limited to shared hosting plans only
  • Custom control panel instead of cPanel or Plesk.

Looking for the best DreamHost deal?
Use our special discount link today and save up to 30% on DreamHost. Includes 97-day money-back guarantee.


DreamHost offers an innovative approach to hosting, and its move to the cloud has allowed it to branch out. Despite the advance of other control panels, it has stuck to its approach of using its own custom panel for everything.

Depending on your situation, the control panel could be a blessing or a curse, and the lack of a reseller option could be limiting in some cases.

But the long money-back period with shared hosting plans means you have a chance to try DreamHost's unique service for 97 days without risk.

Sound good? Visit DreamHost now.

Contributing editor: Marko Csokasi.

Shared Web HostingDreamHost CloudVPS Hosting
Disk Space50GB100GBUnlimited
Price $2.59 / mo
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1TBUnlimited $149 / mo Visit Host Now
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DreamHost Frequently Asked Questions

  • Does DreamHost offer a money-back guarantee?

    Yes. DreamHost offers its 97-day money-back guarantee on shared hosting purchased by credit card. No other products, services, or payment methods are eligible. If you received a free domain, its value will be deducted from your refund.

  • Can DreamHost help me to migrate my website?

    Yes. They offer free migration on some advanced plans. Otherwise, they charge $99. DreamHost provides some support documentation to help you move your website manually. Given that DreamHost uses a proprietary control panel, this can be an involved process.

  • How do I contact Dreamhost?

    DreamHost prefers support requests to go through its ticketing system. You can open a new ticket by filling in a form on its website. Its technical support team is in-house and is available 24/7. It does offer live chat as well. If you'd like to speak on the phone, you'll need to ask for a callback. There is a fee for this callback support.

  • Where is DreamHost located?

    The company is headquartered in Brea, California in the USA.

  • Where are its datacenters located?

    The company utilizes one datacenter in Oregon and one in Virginia.

  • Is there a minimum contract period?

    The minimum term on most packages is 1 month.

  • Does Dreamhost support WordPress?

    Yes. Dreamhost supports WordPress with both their shared and VPS hosting services. More, a fully managed WordPress solution is also available for bigger websites as well as businesses that need the most dependable environment. Note, however, that managed WordPress hosting is significantly more expensive.

  • Which control panel does DreamHost offer?

    DreamHost has its own proprietary control panel, DreamHost Panel.

  • Is the customer support multilingual?

    No. The support team provides support in English only.

  • Does DreamHost have a reseller plan?

    DreamHost allows reselling, but it doesn't offer a traditional reseller option. If you want to resell its hosting, you just add your customers' domains to your account, and manage them in the usual way. DreamHost does not provide any white label services or support, and you will be fully responsible for any violation of DreamHost's terms.

  • Are backups included?

    DreamHost takes daily snapshots, but these are for internal use only. DreamHost is vague about the details, so it would be wise to make your own backup arrangements using the manual backup feature in the DreamHost Panel.

  • What payment options does DreamHost accept?

    DreamHost only accepts credit cards and (for limited hosting plans) PayPal. For later payments, they accept major credit cards, checks, electronic checks, money orders, gift certificates, and PayPal.

  • Can I create more than one website?

    The Starter shared hosting plan only allows one website. The Unlimited plan allows as many as you want. On a WordPress hosting plan, each additional website attracts a monthly charge.

  • Can I install Magento?

    In theory, Magento will run on any plan with sufficient storage space and RAM. DreamHost does not offer specialized Magento packages.

  • Are DreamHost's servers secure?

    DreamHost's sites and servers are protected around the clock. The company does not provide details about the nature of its datacenter security.

  • Are one-click installers provided?

    Yes. DreamHost offers a number one-click installers, including WordPress, Joomla!, MediaWiki, phpBB, and Zen Cart.

  • Could I host an image-heavy site with DreamHost?

    Yes. DreamHost offers unlimited resources on its Unlimited shared hosting plan. Providing you do not create a resource-intensive website, such as a download site, you should not run into any problems.

  • Does DreamHost offer any discounts for non-profit organizations?

    US non-profit charitable organizations can claim a free shared hosting plan. A 501(c)(3) letter will be requested.

About Claire Broadley

Claire has been creating websites for over 20 years and has been using WordPress for over ten. She is an expert in web hosting, design, HTML, and more. She lives with her husband and son in the United Kingdom.

Connect with Claire

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