A comment was recently posted here about my move from RootsWeb to my own domain. I've read similar sentiments elsewhere and wanted to quickly run down why I'm not very concerned about these issues.
#1 A successful site will be charged more by the hosting company.
I know this happens. I was once co-admin of a site that while not widely known, was one of the top sites for a specific interest. I didn't pay the bill or deal with a lot of the behind-the-scenes stuff, but I knew what was going on with my buddy's web hosting nightmares. The differences between the site I'm building and this moderately successful site (in terms of traffic) are plentiful.
That was then (2000) and this is now. Hosting plans are different, and this is an entirely different hosting company. I'm in charge of my work's website and we've used this same host for over a year and a half without any problems.
If I decide to install forums, the number of users will be a drop in the bucket compared to what I used to oversee. So, forums will not be a resource hog.
Most of the content I will create has a limited audience. That's the nature of a personal genealogy site. It's true that I will go behind that a little, but I am not looking to create any sort of regional resource.
Most importantly, my hosting plans allows for 15,000 GB per month of transfer. For a genealogy site that is going to be family-specific, for the most part, that would be a lot of traffic. And should the site become wildly popular (why would it?), I do have some wiggle room in terms of the price. What I'm paying now (less than $7 per month) is locked in for a couple of years and I consider it a very reasonable price.
#2 If something happens to me, the site withers and dies.
My site is essentially nothing more than an advertisement for attracting distant cousins. I see message boards and mailing lists in the same light. After I'm gone, making contact people won't really be a concern, now will it?
As far as someone continuing my work, I hope that happens, but I realize that at the moment there is no such person.
In other words, I'm very content with the package I bought and where this is headed.