I don’t have a wine cellar. I am betting you don’t either. But that has not stopped me from buying and collecting wine and it should not stop you either.
The first thing to know is that the enemies of wine are heat, cold, light, and dramatic temperature changes. So, if you are storing your wine in a cabinet above your stove, STOP READING right now and go move it.
The easiest, cheapest way to store wine is in a box in a closet. But not in any old box in any old closet. Ideally, your box will be a Styrofoam wine shipping box (http://www.uline.com/BL_5450/Styrofoam-Wine-Shippers). These boxes are great. The Styrofoam acts as an insulator and helps regulate the temperature of the wine. Gives it some cushion too. You can get these boxes at wine and liquor stores. If you have ever had wine shipped to you, it will likely have shown up in one of those boxes – so save them! Your closet should be located in a place that does not have too many temperature fluctuations. That is probably a closet that does not have contact with the outside walls of your house.
A bit less easy and a bit less cheap would be to look into off—site storage. You can get a relatively small cabinet (maybe holding 12 cases worth) for not a lot of money. Check around to see what pricing is in your area. Pros are – your wine is at a good temperature. Cons are – you need to plan to get your wine out before a dinner party.
You may want to use a combination of the above two methods -- wine in boxes for drink-now and less special wines and off-site storage for wines that you want to age or are more special.
Way less easy (at least to begin with) and definitely less cheap are wine refrigerators. You can get them in many sizes and at many price points. We actually have three: a small one that we got at Costco that is in our pantry and mainly holds drink-now white wines, and two Vinotheque (http://www.klwines.com/vinotheque.asp) wine fridges that hold quite a bit of wine. The Vinotheque refrigerators are available in many different configurations and finishes.
How do you store your wine?