India’s post office, the largest network of postal services in the world, also acts as a bank which has been helping millions of citizens build their savings. India Post’s fixed deposit scheme is one of the most popular ones. One of the reasons for its popularity is that it offers fixed returns, and Post Office fixed deposits are managed by the National Savings Institute, which falls under the Department of Economic Affairs of the Union Ministry of Finance.
It also comes with a government-backed guarantee and is not market-linked. These are considered to be attractive propositions for Indian account holders.
Read on to learn everything about how to open a post office FD, the post office FD interest rates and important aspects.
About post office FD rates
Like any other bank, India Post offers two types of fixed deposits – the National Savings Time deposit and the National Savings Monthly Income Account, with features similar to fixed deposits offered by other banks. Here, we discuss the unique features of both types of fixed deposits, the Post office FD interest rate, and the benefits of these fixed deposit schemes. There is no difference between the interest rate allocated to regular citizens and senior citizens.
Here is a table detailing the current FD interest rates for post offices.
|Tenure||Post Office FD Rates for Regular Citizens|
|Tenure||Post Office FD Rates for Regular Citizens|
Post office fixed deposit features
Here is a snapshot of the unique features of the Post Office Fixed Deposits and Post office FD interest rates, with effect from January 2023 onwards.
|Feature||Post Office Fixed deposits|
|Tenure||You can choose a term of 1, 2, 3 and 5 years (no tenure for 4 years)|
|Minimum deposit amount||INR 1000|
|Intervals for interest payout||Annual/ monthly payouts|
|Nominee option||Available for all Post Office fixed deposits|
|Tax rules||The interest is taxable as per your income slab|
|Auto-Renewal facility||Offered by post office branches that have core banking solutions. The deposit continues with the same interest rate.|
Post office fixed deposit additional criteria
Listed below are a few additional features and criteria for the Post Office fixed deposit in India.
- The account has a fixed tenure of five years.
- This deposit is taxable as per the account holder’s tax slab.
- Minors need to be at least 10, to open a post office fixed deposit. When they turn 18, a minor’s account can be transferred solely to their name, and they become the single account holder.
- The interest compounds annually and is received as annual payouts for a Time Deposit and as monthly payouts for the Monthly Income scheme.
- On renewal of the fixed deposit, it continues with the same interest rate.
- A depositor can add a nominee when opening an account or even later.
- After 6 months, depositors can make premature withdrawals for their Time Deposits.
- Non-Resident Indians are not eligible to open a National Savings Time Deposit Account (TD) or National Savings Monthly Income Account.
Interest rates for tax saving schemes
If tax-saving is your goal, you can go for the National Savings Time deposit with a tenure of 5 years. It must be noted that the 5-year term fixed deposit is accompanied by a 7% FD interest rate in post office. Under this scheme, you can get a tax deduction of up to INR 1.5 under Section 80C of the Income Tax Act of 1961. An account holder can only leverage a tax deduction in the financial year of the deposit made.
Loan against post office fixed deposit
Post Office fixed deposit account holders can take a loan of up to 90-95% of the deposit amount. The interest charged is low as compared to regular loans. Banks typically charge 16% upwards interest on business loans and between 10% and 24% of an interest rate for personal loans. On the other hand, for post office account holders, it is 2-3% higher than the Post Office FD interest rates.
Steps to open a post office FD
Follow the steps detailed below to open a post office FD in-person:
- You can visit the nearest India Post branch to your home or office.
- Collect the new ‘Post Office Fixed Deposit account application form’.
- Duly fill out the form with all details, such as the name of the account holder, PAN number, address, date of birth, ID proof and address details.
- Submit the form along with copies of the necessary documents to the post office clerk.
- You can make the deposit by cash or cheque.
You can open your Post Office Fixed Deposit account via internet banking with the following steps:
- Visit the post office’s official online portal- ebanking.indiapost.gov.in.
- Enter your registered User ID along with the password to log in.
- From the ‘General Services’ tab, choose the ‘Service Request’.
- Next, carefully follow the steps as given and select the ‘New Request’ option to launch your request to open a Post Office Fixed Deposit.
- You should get a confirmation once the FD opens.
Eligibility criteria for post office FD
You must fulfil the following eligibility criteria to open a post office FD.
- You must be a resident Indian.
- Minors below age 18 are eligible, provided the account is managed by a legal guardian.
- Companies, NRIs and trusts cannot open Post Office FDs.
Documents to start a post office fixed deposit
If you are looking to open a Post Office fixed deposit, you will need to submit the documents listed below:
- Proof of identity documents, which include a passport, Aadhaar Card, Voter ID, Driving license, or PAN card.
- Proof of address documents such as utility bills or electricity bills, a passport, and a driver’s license.
- Two passport-size photographs.
Those who do not have access to such documents can also offer an NREGA Job card signed by the State Government officials or/and a letter issued by the National Population Register displaying name and address details.
Post office fixed deposits are an effective way to save and build your wealth portfolio. It helps balance risk and earn guaranteed returns over a fixed period. If you are looking for tax deductions, you can also go for a five-year Time Deposit. If earning a monthly income is a priority, then go for a National Savings Monthly Income Account. Start saving today and benefit from the Post Office FD interest rates.
Q. Will I get guaranteed returns if I invest in the post office fixed deposits?
The returns on post office fixed deposits are not market links. Hence, they are not volatile, as is the case with equity investment. Post office fixed deposits also offer flexibility to invest for a one, two, three, or five-year period.
Q. What is the Post Office FD interest rate?
The Post Office FD interest rate from January 2023 onwards are as follows: (1 year – 6.6%), (2 years – 6.8%), (3 years – 6.9%), (5 years – 7%) for Time Deposits, and 7.1% for a five-year monthly income fixed deposit. You can also choose between earning annual interest and monthly income.
Q. Is the post office fixed deposit interest taxable?
Yes, the interest earned on a post office fixed deposit is taxed as per your income tax slab.
Q. Is there a tax deduction available on post office Fixed deposits?
Yes. Under Section 80C of the Income Tax Act of 1961, account holders who invest in the five-year Time deposit can get a tax deduction of up to INR 1.5 Lakhs.