DirigoDev - 3:00 pm on Jul 18, 2013 (gmt 0)
The most that I've ever paid is $80K for a popular supplement ingredient name (that was back in 2002). Purchased that one for a client who has never used it. It is likely worth 5-10x what I paid.
Recently I've paid $10-14K a few times for domains that I wanted to use - the sort of names that I could also pull a trademark on. Having a good name is worth some $$ if you're going to use it for a site. I've done more $1,500 - $2,500 purchases than I can remember. This is the sweet spot for me. It seems like domains have gotten less expensive over the past few years. Squatters are more reasonable these days.
If I can get KW value in a domain I do so. But a name that customers can remember is far more important. I'm not into domaining or AdSense rev models. I use my domains to publish information for lead gen or selling services/products. I see nothing wrong with paying $18k for a good domain that you're going to use as long as you have $18K to spend. I would never go into debit to purchase a domain.