Wine Insurance

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If you enjoy a fine bottle of wine, you might think that it is for drinking. The thought of insuring that pleasure may be a long way from your mind. With the increasing popularity of fine wine as a form of investment and the attraction of maintaining your own private cellar, however, it might be worth thinking again.

The notion of investing in fine wines caught on largely because of the appeal of the simple economics.

Typically, an investor bought as many bottles or cases of the best wine his or her budget allowed. In many instances, the value of that initial investment doubled in just a few years. At this point the investor was able to sell half the stock and recover the initial outlay, but still take delivery of half of the consignment. The latter might be seen as a form of “interest”, which was nevertheless used for entertaining or enjoyment for many years to come.

Insuring your wine

Factored into this apparently simple equation there is the risk of prize bottles, certain cases or even the whole cellar being damaged or stolen.

Flooding of a cellar, for instance, might be catastrophic. The wine itself might be safe, but labels on the bottles might be seriously damaged, thus severely reducing its re-sale value. Bottles might also be damaged accidentally whilst theft, of course, speaks for itself.

Against this background of potential disasters, therefore, you might want to look for wine insurance that offers “all risks” protection – for the fine wine stored at your home but also preferably extending to any wines you entrust to a recognised storage agent and for wines that are in transit.

There are specialist insurers experienced in the provision of such cover and, unlike practically any other form of personal insurance, some charge no excess in the event of a claim.

Existing cover

If you are just starting out in your appreciation of fine wine or beginning to lay down a cellar for investment purposes you may find that your existing home contents insurance policy may suffice.

There may come the time, however, when the value of your wines exceeds the maximum imposed by your home insurer.

But there are additional reasons for thinking again about relying on the protection of your standard home insurance rather than arranging separate cover through a specialist provider.

Every time you submit a claim on your home contents insurance you are more than likely going to have to pay an excess. Perhaps worse than that, moreover, you may typically lose any no claims bonus you have built up in previous years and face much stiffer premiums when next you renew the policy.

A single, separate policy covering your fine wines only may also provide the focus necessary to ensure that you regularly review and update the level of cover needed to protect a collection that is growing in value.


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