A wine collection is uniquely enjoyable to acquire. There may be nothing else that you can both collect as an asset and share with friends to mark special moments quite like wine. Certainly, whether you’ve got a few bottles of value or you’ve been amassing a stellar cellar for years, you’ve thought about insurance.
If your collection has grown in importance, it might be time to insure it separately from your homeowners’ policy. Your homeowners’ policy may cover your wine to some degree in the event of fire or theft, but what about spoilage due to the failure of climate control or accidental breakage? When your wine collection becomes valuable to you sentimentally or financially, it’s probably time to speak to an agent about acquiring specialized wine insurance.
Some people buy a few cases of wine during a lovely anniversary trip to Napa and then end up holding on to the last bottles, while some people seek out historically significant bottles at auctions and have always considered wine a potential investment. By whatever method you began to collect wine, you might now be the proud owner of some wine that is rich with sentimental value and worth as much as other valuables you own, such as jewelry or antiques.
Insurance specifically on your wine collection will generally start at the first dollar of loss, so your deductible won’t eat into the value of the asset you’ve lost. If you specifically choose, you can get coverage for bottles that you’ve purchased but not yet received so that any wine damaged in transport from auction or your favorite winery in Spain will also be covered.
You should begin by consulting with an insurance agent, either at the company where you carry your other policies or at a specialty insurer. The agent will help you decide if your collection warrants blanket or scheduled coverage. Blanket coverage will treat your wine collection as a unit. Essentially, it will be worth an agreed-upon amount. Each bottle within the collection will be insured as a fraction of that whole. The most valuable bottle and the least valuable bottle under the blanket coverage will both warrant the same payout if a claim is filed.
This type of coverage might suit you best if your collection as a whole is valuable, and no one bottle is a financial standout. You will be more easily able to open and enjoy a bottle from your collection as well as add to it without notifying your agent of changes to your policy with a blanket policy.
Scheduled coverage is a better choice for collectors with high-value bottles of wine or bottles intended to be kept for a long time—during which time they may appreciate substantially. Each bottle in your collection will be itemized in a scheduled coverage policy. You will likely need to speak with an expert and may need to have bottles in your collection appraised.
This type of policy will take a little more work upfront and a little more maintenance throughout. You’ll need to notify your insurance company if you add a high-value bottle or if a momentous occasion finally warrants the opening of a historic bottle of bubbly from your cellar.
If your collection seems to fall somewhere in between these two types of insurance, don’t panic. The good news is that you can always choose a combination of blanket and scheduled coverage by insuring the collection as a whole and then covering specifically a few precious bottles.
If you’re considering a wine insurance policy, you are someone who loves wine and has given thought to building your collection. One condition of insuring your wine collection might be building and maintaining a climate-controlled space in which to store your wine.
Depending on the size of your collection and the amount of space you can dedicate to that collection within your house, options abound. You can build a small room under the stairs with shelves to keep the bottles safe and accessible, or you can carve out an entire custom tasting room where you can both store and care for your wine collection in a climate-controlled environment. This can be a beautiful space in which to share your love of wine with friends and family.
The storage solutions experts here at Harkraft are eager to help you decide how to best care for and store your wine collection. We create custom solutions for wine collections of all sizes, from a few bottles to the collection of a lifetime. We’ll walk you through every step, from finding the right space in your home to designing, building, and installing climate control, storage, and finishing touches. Contact us today to learn more about caring for your wine collection with style in mind.