When you are planning your finances, there are some investments you choose to secure your life and some to generate high returns. There are financial instruments these days that provide security along with investment, like a Unit Linked Insurance Plan (ULIP). A ULIP is a type of life insurance with an investment component to it. When you buy a ULIP policy, half of the premium amount you pay is used towards providing you with a life cover, and the other half is used towards investments. In case the policyholder loses their life during the tenure of the ULIP, they will receive a sum assured. It creates financial security for your loved one in your absence. However, if the policyholder has survived when the ULIP has matured, they will receive the sum of investment along with its return.
The fund performance of a ULIP is directly subjected to market volatility. For the investment part of ULIP, an investor has several benefits that most traditional programs fail to offer. If one has never invested in equity markets or finds it too risky, a ULIP is the perfect instrument to start with. Here are some reasons you should invest in equity funds through your ULIP-
- High returns
ULIPs that are allocated in equity funds are high risk and often offer high returns. When compared to other life insurance products with savings or investment components, a ULIP with equity funds offers much higher returns. Also, these returns easily beat the returns you get from traditional investments like Fixed Deposits (FDs).
- Flexibility to switch funds
When you are investing in ULIPs, based on your risk appetite, you have three options to allocate your funds in; equity, debt, and balanced funds. If you are afraid of putting all your money in equity, you can balance out the risk by investing in a balanced fund. In balanced funds, half of your money is invested in equity and the other half is invested in debt. So, the risk is moderate and so are the returns.You can also invest in equity funds initially and later switch to debt funds. Several investors prefer to switch from equity to debt during the time of maturity. They earn great returns from their equity allocations in the initial years and later, to reduce the risk, they invest the money in debt funds. The flexibility of switching your allocation accelerates the fund performance of ULIP as it helps one to mitigate the risks and make the most of market fluctuations.
- Enables long-term wealth generation
ULIP in the long haul helps in wealth generation through the power of compounding. It helps one to achieve their long-term financial goals like buying their dream house, their child’s education, or simply their retirement. Equity funds of ULIP offer high returns which in the long run can multiply with compounding. Use a ULIP plan calculator to get an estimate on the returns of your ULIP and to determine whether the investment is enough for your goals. With a goal-oriented approach, the investments and returns of ULIP would benefit one greatly in the long haul.
- Allows partial withdrawal
Traditional investments like FDs restrict partial withdrawals and one may have to break their FD to access the funds in it. With your ULIP policy, you can make free partial withdrawals after the lock-in period. The lock-in period for most ULIPs is five years. If you need to withdraw funds early before the lock-in period, you can, but you would have to pay certain fees for it. The feature of partial withdrawals is handy during times of emergencies.
- Tax benefits
ULIP is a tax-saving instrument where you receive tax benefits at every stage of your policy. The premiums that you pay for your ULIP are exempt from taxes under Section 80C of the Income Tax Act. Most insurance companies allow you to switch between funds at least two or three times, levying no charges. When your ULIP matures, the investment and returns that you receive are also exempt from taxes. Under section 10 (10D) of the Income Tax Act, the sum assured received after maturity and the life cover, both are tax-free.
The returns and flexibility of ULIP with equity funds have made it a more popular investment choice than most traditional investments. Planning your ULIP investments, using a ULIP plan calculator, and taking financial decisions, accordingly, will enable you to meet your long-term goals.