I have been closely following the articles written in detail by the experts in this bulletin and elsewhere on investments. Every other day, I keep receiving phone calls from my bank's so-called “relationship manager” who is more interested in achieving his targets by pushing his products rather than helping me in the banking. Then I have all those LIC agents who are withholding more information, rather than revealing and who are only interested in selling the policies having very high premium. I landed up doing my own unbiased research and came across many options about investing in shares and in insurance.
I have been investing for a few decades now. I started out with tips from friends and my broker but then I began to study companies and invest. I believe in investing in stocks of companies because someone had once explained to me that it is the next best thing to starting your own business. You get a share in someone else's business.
With time it became more and more difficult to spend time on doing detailed research and I started making mistakes. That's when I discovered mutual funds. Mutual funds have professional fund managers who manage your money. Just as with years of experience, I have become a better doctor, they have become better at making investments. And just as a pediatrician will not self-treat for a cardiac problem, it makes sense to go to a specialist for my investments.
Investing in mutual funds came with its own problems. I didn't know how to select mutual funds and went with the recommendation from my broker or newspapers. I also invested in NFOs and within a few years I had almost 20 mutual funds with small amounts in each. Again I made mistakes because I wasn't able to track so many mutual funds. I didn't know how it was doing and when to exit a mutual fund.
I tried many things and then a few years ago I discovered Scripbox. They were very new then and started by a group of Engineer/ IIM graduates.
After a detailed study of their website, I understood these things about Scripbox:
- They only offer a filtered set of mutual funds.
- They have an algorithm that does the filtering. They have a different algorithm for equity funds and different one for debt funds
- When I started investing with them, they had only 4 mutual funds in the equity funds category. Now they have added 3 Debt Funds, and 2 Tax Saving ELSS Funds also. (They have this concept of 4 types of money which I will explain later)
- Recently they also added a debt fund from Reliance which comes with a debit card. This is good for emergencies. You can withdraw from your mutual fund through any ATM
- They change their funds every year, so I am always investing in the best funds.
- While changing funds, they keep track of capital gains tax and exit load so we don't end up losing money.
- They now have a very good app which explains money and investing topics very simply along with showing you your account details.
- The app and website both have planning calculators. For example, how much to save for children's education.
Everything is online. You register on the website (the form is long like a mutual fund application). They will send you one PDF form which you need to sign and attach your PAN card, address proof, and canceled cheque. I had my KYC already but if you don't, they will also do your KYC through a video. What did I like about Scripbox.
- They explained the reasoning behind their choice of funds and, why they suggest only mutual funds, pretty well.
- They don't over promise. I like that they say equity funds are for 6-7 years or longer.
- Their website and app are very simple and no nonsense.
- I could open my wife and daughter's account also under my login.
- They don't have sales people who bother me every week with new things.
- They have a very good call center. People are very helpful and not in a hurry.
- . I don't need to go anywhere else for my investments.
How to use Scripbox? They have this concept of 4 types of money
- Spending money or emergency money which you need at a moment's notice. This can be in savings bank account or Scripbox has tied up with Reliance debt fund with a debit card. Debt funds will give better returns than a savings account.
- Short term money which you need in less than 5 years. This should be in FD or debt funds where it won't be affected by the stock market. Again Scripbox has debt funds where there is no TDS and also very low tax if you invest for 3 years.
- Long term money which you don't need for 6-7 years or longer. This should be in equity funds. Equity funds have no tax if you hold for more than one year.
- Tax Saver Plan under Sec 80c. Instead of investing in LIC, PPF, etc tax saving mutual funds are a better option.
Once you decide what kind of money you are investing, you just click on that and tell them how much you want to invest. You can invest a one-time lump sum or do a SIP every month. For SIP you have to give them a one-time bank mandate. You can also use net banking to investing.
I have been using Scripbox for 4 years and experience has been very good. Their website says that there are also many other people from Gujarat and I'm sure some of you may already be using. Recently Scripbox was shortlisted amongst the top 100 finalists companies of Asia by Red Herring.
Happy investing at scripbox.com!
This article written by by Dr. Sanjeev Goel, originally appeared in the Monthly Bulletin of Academy of Paediatrics Vadodara.