Most people like a good glass of wine - on a patio in the summer, shared with friends over dinner, or next to the roaring fire come winter. And a select group of people consider themselves wine collectors, looking for wines with a little special something, a rare vintage or a storied history. Those collectors often keep a great collection of wine, either in a home cellar or stored off-site. Homeowners insurance alone often doesn't offer the kind of protection a collector would want or need, and there is a special coverage just for a wine collection.

Chubb Insurance, a company that our office represents and that offers wine insurance, recommends that anyone who is serious about collecting wine consider this coverage. This special policy protects your wine collection in case your storage area has a fire, that really rare bottle is stolen, or breaks. It can also protect against damages to wine where extreme temperature fluctuations are common. If your wine collection is stored in a warehouse or storage facility, special wine insurance would be very beneficial. And compared to other valuables, wine can be fairly inexpensive to protect- and you can select a policy that simply insures the value of the whole collection (a "blanket") or calls out specific bottles (needing a value, description and possibly an appraisal for each).

If you think your collection is something that merits special coverage, what are some things you should consider? Wine Enthusiast Magazine has a few tips to offer:

1) Call Us. We know what types of coverages are available, what would suit your needs and what type of coverage would be most beneficial to your collection. Our job is to advise you on how best to protect what you value most.

2) Ask Questions. Make sure you know what your wine policy would cover and make sure you are satisfied with that answer. Are you planning on traveling abroad with your wine? Then your policy needs to include worldwide coverage. Are you nervous about an earthquake rattling your bottles and breaking them? Be sure you are comfortable with what coverage you are purchasing, and let us know your concerns so that we can best match a policy to your collection.

3) Get an Appraisal. Maybe you are more interested in a blanket policy, as opposed to a specific list, but an appraisal can determine the value of the collection - a very important thing how much coverage to purchase. And after an appraisal is completed you may decide to specifically list each bottle on the policy.

4) Make a Detailed Inventory. Similar to an appraisal, an inventory of your collection can help determine the amount or type of coverage you need. And in the event of a loss, you'll be able to quickly know what's been damaged or stolen.

5) Keep Your Policy and Inventory Up to Date. Anytime you sell, acquire or drink a bottle from your collection, the value may change. Be sure to update your inventory regularly to note any changes, and when the values or quantities in your collection change, your policy should reflect that as well. Periodic reviews are essential to insuring any type of collection, and wine is no exception.

 If wine collecting is a passion of yours, you need to consider having it insured. We are always more than happy to answer questions or look into coverage options for you - that' s what why you have us. Happy wine collecting, and cheers!