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5 Best Tax Saving Investment Options

 
 

Tax planning is a key component of a financial plan. Whenever we make investments, one of the thoughts in our mind is "Will it be eligible for tax benefits? This article is an attempt to make the readers identify some popular tax friendly investments.

There are various investment options under section 80C, 80CCC and 80CCD of Income Tax Act that allow deductions from our total income (up to Rs. 150,000). When you utilize these provisions, the net taxable income reduces resulting in lowering tax liabilities. A gist of the various forms of investments is given below:

(A) Investments under Section 80C

  • Public Provident Fund (PPF): It is one the most conservative and risk-free avenue of investment where an interest of 8% to 8.7% is accumulated annually, and the maturity period is 15 years. Minimum amount of contribution is Rs. 500. Its principal, interest earned and the maturity value would remain tax free.
  • Tax Saving Fixed Deposit: These are similar to other bank fixed deposits but have a lock-in period of 5 years.
  • Life Insurance Premiums: Any amount paid towards LIP for yourself, your spouse or your children can be included in Section 80C deduction. Premium paid for more than one insurance policy can also be claimed.
  • Equity Linked Savings Scheme (ELSS): ELSS is a category of equity mutual funds that offer tax savings. Investments in ELSS are locked for three years.
  • National Savings Certificate (NSC) (VIII Issue): NSC is a tax saving instrument with a maturity period of Five years (Interest @ 8.5% p.a.). Minimum investment amount is Rs. 100, there is no maximum amount (Interest income is chargeable to tax). Note: Ten Year NSC has been discontinued from April 2016.
  • New Pension Scheme: You can invest Rs. 500 per month or Rs. 6000 p.a. in NPS. The returns from NPS varies in the range of 4% to 10%.

(B) Section 80CCC

Under this section, the amount paid towards premium for any annuity plan of an insurance company is allowed as a deduction.

(C) Section 80CCD

Deduction in respect of contribution to pension scheme of Central Government is allowed from Gross Total Income.

Illustration: Mr. Malhotra's Gross Total Income for FY 2016-17 is Rs. 12,50,000. He invests in following instruments: PPF Rs. 45,000, Paid LIP Rs. 15,000, ELSS Rs. 75,000, and Tax Saving FD Rs. 30,000.

Computation of Net Income:

Gross Total IncomeRs. 12,50,000
Less: Deductions us 80CPPFRs. 45,000
LIPRs. 15,000
ELSSRs. 75,000
FDRs. 30,000
TotalRs. 165,000
Maximum deduction allowedRs. 1,50,000
Total Income/ Net IncomeRs. 11,00,000

(D) EMI for Housing Loans

If an individual has availed a housing loan, the EMI payment will be eligible for availing tax benefits. Here are the components:

  • Home Loan Principal Repayment: The EMI that you pay every month consists of two components - Principal and Interest.
    • The principal component qualifies for deduction Under Section 80C.
    • The interest component can save you tax, but under Section 24, under the head "Income from House & Property".
  • Stamp Duty and Registration Charges for a home can be claimed as deduction under section 80C in the year of purchase of the house.

(E) Sukanya Samriddhi Scheme

Protection and financial stability of a girl child is a matter of concern in our country hence, the Sukanya Samriddhi Account, a special deposit scheme was launched by PM Narendra Modi on 22nd January 2015 for girl child. Under this scheme:

  • Minimum deposit amount is Rs. 1,000 and maximum is Rs. 1,50,000 per year Under Section 80C.
  • Money to be deposited for 14 years.
  • Interest rate 9.1% per annum.
  • Per girl child only single account is allowed (maximum 2 girls). In case of twins will be extended to third child.

We have tried to separate the chaff from the grain by giving most tax friendly investment options, to help you utilize your earnings better and better your financial health.

You may be entitled to certain applicable tax benefits on your premiums and policy benefits. Please note that all the tax benefits are subject to tax laws prevailing at the time of payment of premium or receipt of benefits by you. Tax benefits are subject to changes in tax laws.

 
 
 

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