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Anyone Insure their Cigars?

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I'm curious to know if anyone has done this. We all know how obsessive/compulsive this collecting hobby can get (and how quickly our hoard can be worth a small treasure!)... Apart from the regular, controlled "fires" we subject our stash to, has anyone insured them from other types of loss (flood damage, theft, etc.)?

A quick google search shows that a homeowners policy should cover things (but if you're considered a "smoker" the policy can be up to 20% higher? Risk of fire I guess?)

What if you live in the US and a large part of your collection is Cuban? Are these deemed "illegal" and un-insurable?

Thoughts?

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I've thought about this too. Very rarely do you have an item so valuable that you exclude from your insurance policy. The reason I have thought about leaving them uninsured is to avoid a few of things.

1. Admitting that I have large amounts of contraband in my home (as I live in the US)

2. Admitting on paper that I am a smoker of tobacco (even though I would not be reporting this to my health insurance)

3. Writing down in front of my wife how much my cigars are worth

To me, the risk of losing the cigars in a fire or flood is substantial, but not worth the added hassle and headaches that would come along with insuring them. I'd love to, don't get me wrong, but in the US I just don't think it's in my best interests.

Tom

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Is it not a bit silly to try to insure an illegal item (Cuban cigars) if you reside in the U.S.??? I mean really, c'mon!

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Not informing your insurance that you are a smoker is a recipe for disaster as this gives them an easy out to not pay a penny for a claim you make and a simple blood test gives them all the proof they need. As for insuring your stash outside of America I am sure there must be a way of doing it.

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Jokes aside. It's a good question. Those in the USA would be foolish to insure their CC's but there's the rest of us in the world who can. I'd imagine cigars would be covered under your home insurance. Especially if you document it well. Any insurance folks here want to chime in?

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Having worked in insurance in a past career life, insuring cigars was (is?) no problem. They were covered under your general contents policy. If your collection is extensive and valuable it's best to insure them under specified contents. Keep photographs of the collection, proof of purchase etc and come claim time it 'should' be relatively easy. No different than having a collection of baseball cards, comics etc. As for home insurance being more expensive if a smoker....never heard of that.

Now as for Cubans in the States....different story.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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I've never been asked if i was a smoker when i got my homme insurance policy. I don't get asked either when i renew the policy every year. I must admit that it would make sense, i guess fire is more likely to occur in a smoker's house than in a non smoker's

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Something one never thinks about. Great thread. I think I will look into it. Not worth a whole lot now but we all know how these things can go.

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When my wife was doing her PhD in another state we rented a cheap apartment. We bought a renters insurance policy. I kept a well stocked humidor there. We got robbed. They took the humidor and the cigars. Insurance company asked me the value of the cigars and the humidor. I said 575USD.

They paid and never asked the origin of the cigars or wanted to see proof of purchase.

I think am covered now under my home owners policy for X amount.

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What if you live in the US and a large part of your collection is Cuban? Are these deemed "illegal" and un-insurable?

Thoughts?

I would strongly have to assume that if you reside in the US that there really is no option to insure your cigars if they are primarily cuban. Who would want to draw that type of attention in the first place?

As far as insuring them in general, if I had a substantial collection (over 5k worth) then I might consider it. Proper maintenance in your home as well as proper location for your humidor/cabinet is key to help ensure your house and belongings stay just that much safer.

Theft is something completely different though..

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I know 2 Americans that's collected insurance benefits for their cigars do to water damage. Their benifits were the minimum since it was a home owners policy

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Who insures their weed plants in their basements? Anyone?

I sure as hell would if I had any!! But I live in Colorado!

As for my cigars, nope I pretend I don't own any and just pray nothing ever happens besides me setting fire to em...one by one.

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I guess the real question would be around substantiation... I would of course never want to highlight the fact that certain cigars were Cuban but if I had to prove a loss (let’s just say of over 1,000 cigars potentially) by photos or receipt (and the adjuster was wise enough to know the difference) I was curious as to what might happen.

It's nice to hear some stories of losses that were covered... Maybe the lesson here is kinda "don't ask, don't tell”?! Though God knows the NCs can also be pricey...

On a side note regarding Life insurance: I had the opportunity to work an offsite meeting with a large US insurance firm; it was a sort of brainstorming session around creating new products for market (very interesting to see a window into that world). Ultimately the insurance industry is about managing risk—a firm is making a bet, with what they know about you—to gamble that the odds of having to pay a claim to you is less likely than the benefit they would gain from the premiums you would pay; we all know this.

The crazy part is how fast the “what they know about you” is changing. Typically your age, sex, occupation, past medical history, etc. would determine your “risk” to an insurance firm. Now, they are beginning to use seemingly disparate data sources like your credit score, driving record, and other publicly “scrape-able” information found on the internet about you to determine—with a high degree of accuracy—your overall risk profile. They do this not only with the help of proprietary algorithms to crunch this “big data” but with a high degree of automation… The role of the underwriter (that person/department that typically would assess your risk) will soon go away.

So, having the opportunity during a side conversation with a manager at this meeting I just had to ask, “How do you know if someone smokes cigars?” His response: “We don’t.” Now I should also give his response some context, we were talking about when someone would be considered a “smoker”, and I gave an example of someone who may smoke a celebratory cigar at weddings, etc., a few times a year. Still, we know that blood/urine/hair tests can be done to measure the presence of nicotine and its metabolite cotinine; I can’t help but think: would it be fair for an insurance company to deny a claim for someone who happened to die shortly after a “celebratory cigar”—maybe the only one they had that year?

Let me be clear though: I am not advocating or condoning anyone not telling the truth on insurance applications or committing insurance fraud. I can’t help but think cynically, however, that most insurance companies would use any information available to deny a claim.

And as I type all this, I can’t help but being a little paranoid, as the data continues to be “scraped”, captured, cataloged, and cross-referenced lookaround.gif …lol!

Lastly, as I continue to take my original post way off-topic, how can anyone take seriously the position of the US on Cuban cigars, an executive order made by JFK only after he secured over 1,000 H Upmanns for himself? I guess you never really can separate humans from self-interest…

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i had an insurance broker over for one of my summer fumadas and as far as a collection goes, he said it would be covered under contents. for a smoker that has a large amount of cigars and smokes them, your stock pile would be rather fluid so next mays apraisal of you stash would be very different than todays.

he told me to photograph all my boxes and then using the local indian bands website, get a value on them that way if the house does burn down, i have some form of proof. i gave a memory stick to my home insurance broker and will probably update it once a year

i have done that and i also have a list to keep track of whats going out and whats coming in. freaked myself out when i realized i had close to 2,500 cigars. the insurance broker guy that came to my fumada said that they could be worth $10/stick using the law of averages so we have bumped up our contents to reflect that.

can't stress enough the need to have a good relationship with your broker and not insure yourself and your stuff through some 1-800 number

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Had a little river running through my basement for about a day after my water heater broke a couple of weeks ago. My cigars in the coolidor were fine, but I've been thinking a lot about how I would have felt if they weren't.

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I know I'm exhuming a post from the dead, but I've been pondering this as my cigar collection has become one of my most valuable possessions, and with the legality of Cubans becoming even more muddied, I think it's worth revisiting.

 

How many out there have insured their cigar collection?  Anyone ever collect in the event of fire, water damage, etc?  I'm sure there are plenty of people with much larger collections than I who could probably give some wisdom on how to handle.

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32 minutes ago, JohnInCleveland said:

I know I'm exhuming a post from the dead, but I've been pondering this as my cigar collection has become one of my most valuable possessions, and with the legality of Cubans becoming even more muddied, I think it's worth revisiting.

 

How many out there have insured their cigar collection?  Anyone ever collect in the event of fire, water damage, etc?  I'm sure there are plenty of people with much larger collections than I who could probably give some wisdom on how to handle.

I am sure this scenario would only be covered under your homeowners or renters insurance. I don't think there is a policy specific for a cigar collection. I do belong to a Rolex watch forum where some members have multi-million dollar watch collections. And you can bet they are insured. My watch is insured for replacement value under a special jewelry policy, but I can't say if you could do this for a 30K cigar collection. Best to call your insurance agent and pose the hypothetical question to him. 

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In my experience, most any tangible asset is insurable and it's up to everyone's personal preferences as to what is worth the cost and hassle to do so.  I have separate itemized policies for art and jewelry, but my cigars simply fall under my home owner's policy.  If my collection grows to a certain value, I will most likely itemize it under a separate policy. 

I do catalogue and inventory them, not for insurance purposes, but it's nice to have for that case as well.  It's my understanding that it's not illegal to own Cuban cigars in the United States.  Many people on this forum take them through customs, declare them, and have no issues.  You are not allowed to buy or sell them in the U.S., but current rules seem that the actual ownership of the cigars is not an issue.  I've never had to prove provenance of any insured item, simply ownership / possession of it.  I can't speak to the nuance of what an insurance company might go through to try and get out of a claim, but in my experience, I've simply sent proof of damage for any insured item and used reasonable market comps to establish fair market value for my claim.  I assume cigars would be handled in the same way.

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I spoke to my agent when I moved my homeowners insurance to a new company (Farmer’s) this past June. As previously stated in the thread, he told me that it is covered under the general provisions of the homeowners policy and that I should document what I have. I have taken photos and put together a spreadsheet all of which are downloaded to a flash drive and kept in my fire safe. I plan on updating this once a year when the policy is renewed.

As far as the “legality” of my Cuban collection, things have changed since this thread was created in 2014 and as of today it is technically no longer illegal for me to possess my collection. Although there is a distinction between what I buy overseas and bring through customs in person vs. what I buy over the internet, my insurance company has no way of knowing which of my boxes fit each category. I’m quite confident that if I ever need to collect on my policy (God Forbid) it will not be an issue.

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