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Insurance question for collectors

Joined
30 June 2004
Messages
17
Location
Camarillo, CA
Does anyone know how guys with collections insure their cars? Surely a collector with a dozen or more active cars wouldn’t use a standard insurance policy for all those cars? Are there policies out there that allow you to turn insurance on and off on certain cars? For example, could a collector with 25 cars be able to insure only 5 cars at a time, and rotate the coverage to follow the cars being used at the time? I have a very small collection using standard insurance, and the premiums are killing me, especially since I’m the only driver.
 
Contact an insurance broker. Note "broker", not "agent" -- agents work for insurance companies; brokers work for you.

And even though they work for you, you don't pay them; they work on commissions paid by the insurance companies.
 
My insurance company has coverage for what they call “exhibition autos,” which can’t be used for driving to work or school and are limited to maybe 4000 miles per year. Full coverage, cost based on stated car value.
 

The name makes them sound like a regional company, but I think they offer coverage nationally.
 
I think Cincinnati Insurance company to be a fine company - good people there.
That said, think you should also check Hagerty. They write pretty much what you are needing, except the rotation aspect might be a sticking point for them/you. I've had five NSXs (now four) with them and they have been superb.
 
could a collector with 25 cars be able to insure only 5 cars at a time, and rotate the coverage to follow the cars being used at the time?

That sorta happens automatically, with any insurer. They understand that you can only drive one car at a time. So the premium for your liability coverage doesn't really change no matter how many cars are on the policy, and the premium for stuff like collision coverage is based on the number of miles you drive each car -- so it tends to not go up much as you add more cars.

My NSX is a daily driver, so it's covered by a regular policy that allows me to commute to work, drive unlimited miles per year, etc. But if yours is strictly a weekend car (or less) AND you also have a relatively new car for commuting, you can get specialized insurance from Hagerty or elsewhere that's significantly less expensive than regular unlimited coverage.

I still recommend talking to an insurance broker.
 
I have a 66 and 68 Corvette and a 70 SS Chevelle on my collector car policy. All are insured as "agreed" value. Agreed means that, in the event of a total loss, the insurance company will write me a check for the agreed amount. I also have $0 deductible for fire, theft and collision. Since I have three cars on the same policy, I get to stack my liability. I keep my uninsured limits high because one in four drivers in Florida carry no coverage. Most other cars are insured at $10K. One of the reasons why we have the highest insurance rates in the country. My premium is about $2K per year. About five years ago my premiums were about $600 per year. All cars must be garaged and I am limited to about 3K miles per year. My son is also on the policy at no extra charge. Jerry
 
My policy is with American Car Collectors. They are out of Cherry Hill New Jersey. My NSX is on my corporate fleet policy. I may move it over to my collector policy as I don't use the NSX as a daily driver much anymore. Jerry
 
As i understand it in the US anyway the term"agreed policy" is a MAJOR misnomer. When i called hagerty to get one of these plans( i have cinncinati -but they haven't taken new sports car folks for a couple of decades now), i found there was simply no policy that allows you to "set" your own value. When a claim is made the company simply looks at the last years sales prices of what similar cars have been sold for. This is messed up! What folks are advised to do is to get a new "estimate" by a respected local estimater ($500 of crack - of do you grease their palm to get a high estimate?). There was a time i believe you could get actual agreed value policies, but no more. Street rod folks and folks like us can easily get screwed from what i see. Please hit me back if wrong, just what i found in my personal case and i'm simply too cheap to get a regular estimate. We should have all gotten estimates about a year ago when our rides were at a high he-he or paint our cars Emola Orange?
 
As i understand it in the US anyway the term"agreed policy" is a MAJOR misnomer.

No, agreed-value policies are still a thing. Maybe you're thinking of "stated value"? That phrase is confusing because it sounds like it sets the minimum value you'll receive if there is a total loss -- but actually, it sets the MAXIMUM value that you can receive, and has no bearing on the minimum.

"Agreed value" means they'll pay no less than the agreed value; "stated value" means they'll pay NO MORE than the stated value.

Stated-value policies are really special-purpose -- they're for deliberately setting the value LOWER than what the car's actually worth, so you'll pay lower premiums. Like, suppose you own a McLaren F1. It's a $20M car, but you only paid $1M in 1999 when you sold your dot-com company, and that was the last time you really made any money, so you're trying to be frugal. Even factoring in 25 years of inflation and opportunity cost, your total out-of-pocket cost for the thing is only like $6M -- so you insure it for $10M with a stated-value policy, knowing that even if there's a total loss, you'll receive what you paid plus at least a portion of the appreciation.
 
Agreed value is just that. Both you and the insurance company "agree" in advance what the value of your car is before the loss. The higher the agreed value of the car, the higher the premium. Stated value is point where the negotiations begin to determine the value of your loss. Jerry
 
I had my cars (6 unusual cars) all insured as "regular" cars (most with very low mileage expectations) but recently moved two (Ford GT and NSX) to agreed value with American Modern Property and Casualty Insurance Company
 
Agreed value is just that. Both you and the insurance company "agree" in advance what the value of your car is before the loss. The higher the agreed value of the car, the higher the premium. Stated value is point where the negotiations begin to determine the value of your loss. Jerry
Beside the mentioned American Modern Property and Casualty Insurance Company, are there any other companies to put on my list? When Hagerty told they had no plans that set a fixed minimum (no matter the nomenclature) i assumed that these policies did not exist. My street rod friends have also been complaining about this for a very long time (?) I will certainly call these folks, although i'm only paying Cinncinati $321 a year for my NSX full coverage. It is a "low" mileage policy, but there is no mileage stated so it's really not. Again Cinn has not been taking new "two seater" folks for many years now so don't bother calling. Thanks for the corrections!
 
I got quoted for 50k and 60k of coverage through Hagerty and the premiums showed. Went with the 60k for about $1600/yr. They suggested 73.4k of coverage.
 
Beside the mentioned American Modern Property and Casualty Insurance Company, are there any other companies to put on my list? When Hagerty told they had no plans that set a fixed minimum (no matter the nomenclature) i assumed that these policies did not exist. My street rod friends have also been complaining about this for a very long time (?) I will certainly call these folks, although i'm only paying Cinncinati $321 a year for my NSX full coverage. It is a "low" mileage policy, but there is no mileage stated so it's really not. Again Cinn has not been taking new "two seater" folks for many years now so don't bother calling. Thanks for the corrections!

Not sure who you spoke to at Hagerty, but they definitely offer Agreed Value insurance. They even tout it as a competitive advantage: https://www.hagerty.com/resources/insurance-guides/what-is-stated-vs-guaranteed-value-insurance

I just switched from Geico to Hagerty after Geico sent me a letter calling the NSX "uninsurable. Paying around $1000 a year for 110k Agreed Value.
 
Not sure who you spoke to at Hagerty, but they definitely offer Agreed Value insurance. They even tout it as a competitive advantage: https://www.hagerty.com/resources/insurance-guides/what-is-stated-vs-guaranteed-value-insurance

I just switched from Geico to Hagerty after Geico sent me a letter calling the NSX "uninsurable. Paying around $1000 a year for 110k Agreed Value.
Here is an excerpt from Hagertys site, not as a rebuttal, just possibly of interest for us:

What is Actual Cash Value?

Because most cars begin depreciating the moment they’re driven off the lot, standard insurance companies insure your cars accordingly. They will adjust your payout based on what the car would be worth the day of the accident (prior to any damage occurring), instead of what you originally paid. This is referred to as a vehicle’s Actual Cash Value.

What is Stated Value?

Stated Value is coverage that reflects an amount that is “stated” at the onset of the policy. You tell your insurer what your car is worth (with proper documentation) and it is insured for that amount. The caveat here, however, is that the insurance company can choose to pay you either the Stated Value or the Actual Cash Value, whichever is less.

What is Agreed Value?

Alternatively, Agreed Value, coverage primarily offered by specialty insurers, is based on the proven value of your car as determined by you and the insurance company, according to appraisals, photos, or other relevant documentation. With Agreed Value coverage, the insurance company will guarantee that they will pay this agreed-upon value in the event of a covered total loss.

If you own a classic or collector car that is maintaining or increasing in value, Agreed Value is the best option to consider, or you risk losing out significantly if you have an accident. It’s important to note that most standard insurance companies do not typically offer Agreed Value, unless they partner with a specialty provider.


Thank you for those bringing this to my attention. I am seeing some “weasel words” here under the agreed value plan – “the proven value of your car as determined by you and the insurance company, according to appraisals, photos, or other relevant documentation”. Appraisals – other relevant info? So this seems to not be as simple as you tell them you want to insure it for and they write it up as we have come to expect from home policy adders. I guess once you go though this “agreement” process and you closely read the policy beforehand, that’s what we seemingly wanted. That said, my “standard” cinncinati policy (and I assume others) will pay the “current value” without paying the higher Hagerty policy, so I’m not sure these agreed policys are worth it (?) Just my current thoughts on the learning curve. Sounds like at a minimum I should pop for an appraisal, but then I have to stop tinkering and have it up and running and shined up for that – I better get with it He-he . Thanks!
 
Agreed Value from Appraisals is typically higher than market value. I have appraisals and agreed value coverage for both my NSX and S2000 and they've included any modifications I've done to the cars too which in the market will instead decrease pricing. The intent is cover myself for the cost of a similar base car and the work that goes into it if I had to replace either car. If you have a stock example I would agree that agreed value probably isn't worth it.
 
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