climate-controlled rooms is high. Zigerlig believes that having smart home technology — especially a system that warns
of power failure or a significant drop in
temperature — can help reduce the severity of loss and may affect a client’s rates.
This is important for clients who travel
or own several homes. Ideally, the smart
home system will maintain temperatures
in case of any catastrophic failure.
Some clients store their wine in off-premises, climate-controlled storage
units, and they obtain insurance on the
units.;“But;the;storage;unit;policy;prob-ably doesn’t cover a catastrophic loss for
collectibles, and wine in transit usually
isn’t covered,” Zigerlig explains. “An ad-ditional;concern;is;accidental;breakage.
For example, if a client is having a party
and someone drops a case of expensive
wine while moving it from the cellar to
the kitchen, the loss is covered with a
collectible wine policy.”
Giving wine as gifts
can be compromised whenever it is on
the move, and transit also can subject
bottles to temperature fluctuations. “It’s
best to minimize those potential hazards,” she explains. “Rather than sending a wine from city A to city B, find
out if a local wine shop in or near city
long ‘commute.’ Or, consider purchasing wine gifts directly from a winery.
Wineries are well versed in shipping
particulars and can also inform you
whether the state you are sending to accepts shipments of alcohol.” Otherwise,
reputable wine shop that is also experienced in shipping wine, which is usually
overnight express service.
Collectors who are traveling with wine
also need to minimize extensive jostling
and temperature extremes. If you’re trav-
eling by plane, Zigerlig advises that you
wrap the bottle in a specially padded
wine tote that can be sealed — numerous
options are available from a good wine
shop. “If I transport a bottle in my lug-
gage,” she says, “I put that tote into an ad-
sweater or shirts for additional cushion-
ing. There are also TSA-approved profes-
sional wine totes that are insulated and
can hold up to six bottles.” If you’re trav-
eling in a car, she recommends that you
ioned so it doesn’t move around, and
Guests can be a concern
Agents should ask about
Clients with wine collections often en-
tertain, and they may have house guests
for extended periods of time. Some cli-
ents with multiple residences may rent
out some properties or allow guests to
use the house on the beach in the islands
or wine cooler and remove particularly
She also recommends that wine col-
lectors have a clause in any rental agree-
ment that the wine is “off limits” to ten-
ants. If the people using the property
are guests or family members under an
informal arrangement, it’s important to
policies and coverage needs. The wine is
usually in storage in the basement or an-
other part of the residence, however, and
the agent may not be aware of its exis-
tence. “The best thing agents can do is to
cial collections or about their hobbies,”
Zigelig says. “The agents will then learn
about many items, including wine, that
should have specific coverage.”
view the policy limits with clients at least
annually,” she says. The value of a collec-
tion accumulates over several years, and
the cost to replace it can be exorbitant.
Zigerlig has become a wine collector
Top ways to mitigate risk
herself, and she travels extensively. The
wine collection coverage provides her
with great peace of mind. She knows
the collection will always be protected
whether she’s home or not.
to wine collections
To help wine collectors mitigate risks,
AIG Private Client Group developed a list
of wine storage best practices that collectors — and would-be collectors — need
• Avoid placing wine cellars by walls
next to the laundry room, the boiler
room, the bathroom or other rooms
containing numerous water pipes.
to vibrations (washer, dryer or home
ground to avoid potential flood damage.
materials near the collection.
in the wine cellar are double-paned
• For earthquake-prone areas, seismically retrofit the wine cellar, properly
a vapor barrier that controls humidity;—;install;gaskets;and;floor;sweeps
around the door and use sealed plastic
boxes for outlets, switches and fixtures.
• Purchase a high-quality wine cellar
cooling system that is ducted, split or
through-the wall, and that controls
both temperature and humidity. Ensure the system is appropriately sized
for your wine cellar.
• Have back-up parts for the cooling
system in the event that there is a mal-function;(that;is,;back-up;condensing
• Have a back-up generator for your
home and have it directly power your
cellar or wine storage unit.