Senior Citizens’ Savings Scheme (SCSS)
It is a savings deposit scheme from the government with a 5-year maturity from the date of its opening. It allows a deposit of a lump sum amount ranging from a minimum of ₹1,000 upto a maximum of ₹15 lakh. An interest rate of 8.6% per year applies to Senior Citizens’ Savings Scheme deposits till December 2019 and is credited every quarter.
Who can invest in SCSS?
The Senior Citizens’ Savings Scheme is open to individuals residing in India that are:
- Aged 60 years or above
- Between 55 to 60 years of age and have taken voluntary retirement
- Retired defence staff that do not fall under the age limits above, but fulfil other conditions
Advantages of investing in Senior Citizen Savings Scheme
Safe and secure: The main benefit of Senior Citizens’ Savings Scheme is that it offers a high degree of security because it is essentially a scheme with the backing of the government.
Higher returns: With a yearly interest rate of 8.6%, the scheme enjoys the highest returns among various small savings schemes in India, making it a lucrative option for those in their retirement years
Medium to long term investment option: Those investing in SCSS can either withdraw the maturity amount after 5 years from opening the account or extend it for another 3 years. This makes it not only an investment for the medium term but also the long term.
Tax saving: An essential benefit of the Senior Citizens’ Savings Scheme is that it allows depositors to save tax. A maximum of ₹ 1.5 lakh invested in SCSS is eligible for a tax deduction as per Section 80C of the Income Tax Act
Invest as you wish: An individual can start by investing as little as ₹1000 in SCSS, upto a maximum of ₹ 15 lakhs. Deposits higher than ₹1000 are accepted in multiples of 1000. Those investing below ₹ 1 lakh can make lump sum cash deposits, while a cheque or demand draft needs to be made for deposits above ₹1 lakh.
Withdrawal: SCSS allows an individual to withdraw the invested amount before maturity during a financial need. A penalty might be applied on the premature withdrawal.
Accessibility: Individuals can invest easily through Post Offices across India and public or private sector bank branches. Wide reach and availability is a significant benefit of the Senior Citizens’ Savings Scheme for investors not located in metropolitan cities.