How do you invest in ELSS Tax Saving Mutual Funds to Save Tax

Though Tax planning can be challenging, it can also be rewarding if you choose the right mode of investment. If you are looking to save tax and long term risk-adjusted returns from your investments both, then maybe you may consider adding an ELSS tax saving mutual fund to your portfolio. The simplest thing to do would be to invest in an ELSS tax saving fund, which helps you build wealth and reduce your tax liability. How much tax is saved in the ELSS tax saving mutual fund?

If you are looking for a tax benefit of upto Rs 1.5 lakh under Section 80C of the Income Tax Act, 1961, Equity Linked Savings Scheme (ELSS) is the answer offering you tax savings of upto Rs.46,800 for the highest tax bracket.

How to invest in ELSS tax saving mutual fund?

You can easily invest in an ELSS scheme with a few clicks. If you have already selected a fund of your choice then you may visit the company’s website, select the fund and make an investment. If you are confused about which one to choose among the available funds, then you may choose to approach a distributor who can guide you on which fund to invest in.

Let’s take a quick run on how you can save your hard-earned money by investing in an ELSS Tax Saving scheme.

Is an ELSS tax saver alone?

An ELSS (Equity Linked Saving Scheme) could become your best choice if you are looking for:

Deductions under section 80C of the Income Tax Act, 1961

Opportunity to invest in the equity markets

Long term capital appreciation

The shortest lock-in period of all the tax saving instruments under Section 80C

As per SEBI’s mutual fund categorization norms, ELSS tax saving mutual fund is an open-ended equity-oriented mutual fund scheme that needs to invest a minimum of 80% of its assets in equity & equity related instruments (in accordance with Equity Linked Saving Scheme, 2005 notified by Ministry of Finance).

Generally investment objective of an ELSS tax saving mutual fund is to achieve long-term capital appreciation by investing in equity instruments.

A unique feature about ELSS tax saving mutual fund is that when compared to the other open-ended diversified equity mutual funds, investment in ELSS is subject to a mandatory lock-in period of three years. During this lock-in holding period, you cannot redeem your investments before the completion of three years from the date of the purchase of an investment. After the lock-in, if you decide to redeem the investment on the realized gain, as per the current tax rules, LTCG tax applies.

There are various types of ELSS tax saving mutual funds in the financial markets each following a particular investment objective. Remember, though tax saving could be one of the key objectives behind investment in tax saving fund; it’s a general expectation that any investment should also deliver some return.

Hence, while evaluating your options for investment in ELSS scheme, you need to look at the return column as well as the qualitative aspects too. You need to remember that as an investor, you should know the risk and reward attached to investment before taking the plunge with your hard earning money.

Why Writing Out the Objectives For Your Presentation Is Important

So you have a big presentation to give to impress your boss or to new prospects and you want to make a huge impact. Well, there a lot of strategies out there for delivering a great presentation but you might as well forget them all if you fail to set out your objectives clearly first.

The reason for this is simple; if you don’t have a clear idea of exactly what you want your presentation to achieve then, despite your best efforts, at the end of your presentation your audience won’t have a clear idea of your objectives either.  Without a set of clear objectives you might make a few points effectively but you are leaving a lot to chance. A presentation not created with a strong focus will often leave only a vague impression of the real message you wish to convey.

Begin with the end in mind. If you take time to set your objectives out then you have begun to build a blueprint for the content and structure of your presentation. If you have a clear set of objectives they will inform all your decisions about what to say, when to say it and what to emphasise the most.

So what should your objectives include? Start with the ultimate end in mind, whether it’s a sale, increased web traffic, a chance of promotion, getting a job or even an abstract concept like building credibility. Having this objective in mind then leads to the next level of objectives such as, the key messages that you want to convey, what direct action you want the audience to take at the end or how many new clients you want to sign up.

Once you have these goals in mind then every word, every slide and every image should be evaluated against its ability to help you achieve the goal. Does that long introduction about the company history really help? Does that animation make the message clearer or is it a distraction to your purpose?

Use these goals to inform the narrative structure for your whole presentation as well as the order and emphasis for each point that you wish to make.

Having the end in mind gives you a clear and strong focus on exactly what it is that you need to do to achieve your goals.

Different Types of Webinar Presentations

If you’re a presenter who wants to deliver your material by webinar, the secret is to forget you’re doing a webinar, and structure it just like any other program. There’s nothing magical about the webinar format. It’s just another medium for delivering your presentation. You prepare the content just the way you would any other presentation, and you deliver it in (broadly) the same way.

Let’s look at some of these options.

Keynote presentation

If you give keynote presentations, design your webinar as a keynote-style presentation, with the aim of changing their attitudes or shifting their beliefs. It will probably run for 45-60 minutes, with you doing most of the talking, and perhaps a brief Q&A session towards the end.

Be careful with trying to adapt a keynote presentation to the webinar format. Webinar audiences expect high content. Some keynote presentations are very light on content, which can be acceptable in a conference room. But on a webinar, your audience can’t see you, can’t see each other, won’t speak up as readily, and won’t do interactive exercises unless there’s a very clear point to them. In general, you can’t rely on the energy and “showiness” of a face-to-face presentation.

Training session

If you’re a trainer, your job is much easier. The webinar format is ideally suited for transferring skills and knowledge through education and instruction, provided the teaching doesn’t depend on the participants actually being in the same room.

If you offer your webinar as a training session, you’ll be teaching them skills. It might be about an hour long, with a handout they download in advance, and exercises they complete during the session. You’ll still do most of the talking, but you might have more than one opportunity for them to ask you questions, and you’ll allow more time for questions.

Broadly speaking, you take the material you typically deliver in a face-to-face training session and adapt it for delivering by webinar. You can still use slides, handouts, workbooks, asking questions, asking for a show of hands, and even initiate group discussion.

Training course

The next logical step is to present a multi-stage training course. If you can do one webinar well, it’s only a small step to present material as a series of webinars. Rather than a one-off event, you present the training in smaller chunks, perhaps with “homework” between each session.

Even if you’re not doing training this way in your face-to-face presentations, consider how you could do that using webinars. Webinars lend themselves well to this sequence, because they have such a low overhead. Some of your material might be better delivered as a course, but it might have been too difficult to run a face-to-face event each time.

Interview experts

Webinars allow you to bring in other experts for your audience. Although you can do this in face-to-face presentations as well, that is rare – perhaps because presenters think they themselves need to be the only expert in the room, and their credibility would be diminished if somebody else was also delivering material! For some reason, interviewing experts by webinar doesn’t have the same stigma. In fact, if some people attend your webinars regularly, they will appreciate hearing from your guest presenters as well.

If your guest is already a skilled presenter, they can simply treat the webinar just like any other training webinar. However, you might also have the situation where your guest is an expert, but not a skilled presenter. In that case, you don’t want to force them to make a presentation. Instead, run it as a one-to-one interview, with the audience silently “eavesdropping” on your conversation.

Panel Interview

The next logical step is to interview a panel of experts. If you have experience in this area already, again a webinar is an effective medium for conducting your interviews.

Even with a panel of experts, you can add visuals to enhance the experience for the audience. Of course, the larger the panel the more difficult it is to manage this, so plan it carefully. For example, you might decide only you show visuals – a particular Web page or document, for example – and then call on the panel to comment on it.

Facilitation

If you’re a facilitator rather than a trainer, you can still use a webinar to host your presentation. The key difference here is it’s your job to create the right environment for discussion among the participants, rather than being the expert with the presentation. So you set the scene, and then open the webinar for the audience to do most of the talking (with your guidance, of course).

Coaching and mentoring

So far we’ve talked about webinars as being for group presentations. But there’s no reason you can’t use them for one-on-one presentations as well – in particular, coaching, mentoring or consulting. If you run a webinar as a coaching session, you’ll be asking lots of questions and giving the client more time to answer them. So you might ask a question, and then give the client time to answer it.

If you’re conducting mentoring sessions by webinar, you’ll combine the training and coaching modes – that is, a mix of teaching and asking, with some time for you to speak and some time for them to interact with you and with each other.

Presenting remotely

Finally, one other use of webinar technology is for you to make a presentation remotely (in other words, when you’re not physically present). The audience might be gathered in a room, but you make your presentation from elsewhere.

You might have seen this already in the form of videoconferencing, where a speaker is “beamed in” to a conference or meeting. That is still an option, of course, but it has some drawbacks: It can be expensive, it might require special equipment at both ends, it needs a fast Internet connection, and the audio and visuals don’t always synchronise correctly.

Doing it by webinar is far easier, and often more effective. It doesn’t require as much Internet bandwidth, it doesn’t need any special equipment at your end, and you can show a slide presentation as well.