Given the choice, I would not open an account only because it is a Free demat account. No point in opening a Life Time free demat account with no annual charges and only later repenting on paying higher brokerage charges with poor customer service.

Even though some stock brokers in India offer demat account for free, they find some other ways to make out for it.

One need to be very careful and understand that all these are marketing gimmicks.

However, just for the completeness of the topic , I am providing the list of brokers in India offering Free demat account and no AMC charges.

What is a Demat Account?

Demat account is an account meant to hold the shares of the companies in electronic (de-materialized) form.

Previously companies used to issue shares in physical forms and shareholders kept them as certificates.

Physical certificates had their own drawbacks and advent of technology made it possible to transact shares in electronic form. I have written a separate article on benefits of Demat Account over physical form.

Just like savings bank account which is used to hold our money, demat account is for having the shares.

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You need to open the demat account with stock brokers.

Share brokers are participants of depositories (like NSDL and CDSL), help in buying and selling on stock market by charging brokerage charges.

Stock brokers provide trading platforms to users which acts as an interface between exchanges and the users. You can transact by yourself by using the platforms.

Nowadays, Mobile apps are more popular way of transacting. ( Read: Best Mobile trading Apps in India).

Suggested Read: 10 Best Share Brokerage Firms in India

Life Time Free Demat Account Providers In India

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There are multiple share brokers in India who provide free demat account. I have shortlisted 7 such brokers based on the ratings and customer feedback.

Here is the list of free demat account providers in India,

  • 1. Zerodha Free Demat Account
  • 2. Upstox Free Demat Account
  • 3. 5Paisa Free Demat Account
  • 4. FYERS Free Demat Account
  • 5. India Infoline (IIFL) Free demat account
  • 6. Angel Broking Free Demat Account
  • 7. Sharekhan Free Demat account

#1 Zerodha Free Demat Account

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Zerodha does NOT provide free demat account. That means they levy some charges on demat account opening and yearly Annual Maintenance Charges (AMC).

However, I have included Zerodha in the list since they offer Zero Brokerage demat account.

Zerodha charges zero brokerage for all the investments. ( No brokerage for all the transaction in which you don’t sell the share you purchased same day)

That means no brokerage whether you invest Rs 10 or Rs 10 crores worth of shares.

Hence, We tend to save tons of money in terms of brokerage which can offset account opening fees(one time).

How much Brokerage can be saved with Zerodha?

Let us see how much savings a investor and a trader can do if he opens an account with Zerodha instead with a broker providing free demat account.

For Investor:

If you plan to invest Rs 10 Lakh, with 0.55% brokerage (ICICIDirect charges this much!), you have to shell out Rs5,500 in brokerage itself where as you pay nil in case of Zerodha (Investments are free at Zerodha).

Hence there will be 100% savings in brokerage charges compared to brokers like ICICI Direct.

For Trader:

Now let us see for intraday, Futures & Options traders, how much can be saved.

Let us assume you buy Rs 10lakh and sell 10lakh worth of shares daily. That means in around 20 trading days of month, total turnover will be 400 lakhs.

ICICI Direct charges 0.0275% hence the brokerage charges per month is Rs400Lakh * 0.0275% which is Rs 11,000.

So yearly it would be,

Rs11,000 * 12 months = Rs 1,32,000

Now Zerodha charges Rs 20/trade for intraday. In Zerodha, brokerage is not based on trade value. For each order they charge Rs20 irrespective of trade value.

Hence per day it would be Rs 40 (Rs20 for buy and Rs20 for sell) and for each month it would be 20* Rs40 = Rs 800

So per year it is Rs 800 * 12 months = Rs 9,600

Hence, traders can save more than 90% of brokerage and indirectly add to their profit.

Because of these savings and advanced yet simple to use mobile app (KITE), I recommend opening account with Zerodha. I have been using it since 2012 and pretty satisfied.

Below table shows the details of Zerodha brokerage charges, across the segments.

You can explore more about them by going through below articles.

Zerodha account can be opened instantly online using Aadhaar. Check this detailed step by step guide on Zerodha account opening procedure.

Zerodha Account Opening Charges:

  • Online through Aadhaar : Rs 200
  • Offline by submitting forms : Rs 400

SaveRs200:  you can save Rs200 by opening the account online. Use below Link to save Rs 200.

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#2 Upstox Demat Account

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Upstox is second biggest stock broker in India after Zerodha. They are based out of Mumbai. Earlier they were known as RKSV securities.

Check out my detailed review of Upstox in this post.

Account opening is free at Upstox for limited period of time. The annual charges are Rs 300 per year.

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Brokerage charges are almost same as that of Zerodha i.e Zero for delivery and Rs20/trade for all other segments.

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#3 5Paisa Demat Account

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Unlike Zerodha, they do not offer zero brokerage. They charge Rs 20/executed order, irrespective of volume of trade.

Check out the detailed review of 5Paisa brokerage here in this post.

Their account opening fee is Rs 650 and AMC is Rs 400/year.

However, they refund the account opening free if you deposit Rs 5000 in your trading account while opening the account.

You can utilise that amount for trading and investment purpose.

Best thing I like with them is, they provide research reports and intraday trading tips for free.

Below table shows the brokerage charges of 5Paisa.

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#4 FYERS Demat Account

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FYERS Securities is a Bengaluru based discount stock broker.

The demat account opening fee is NIL for FYERS demat account. However, they charge Rs 400/year Annual Maintenance Charges.

To know more about FYERS Securities, read this detailed review.

The brokerage structure of FYERS is exactly same as that of Zerodha. They also don’t charge on delivery based trades.

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#5 India Infoline (IIFL) Demat Account

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India Infoline is another reputed demat account provider of India offerring free demat account.

India Infoline is into the broking business since 1996 and strong presence across India.

To know more about IIFL, read this complete review.

Account opening is free with IIFL and also Annual charges (AMC) is also zero for first year. From Second year onwards, Rs450 is charged per year.

Below table has the details of India INfoline Brokerage Charges,

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#6 Angel Broking Demat Account

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Angel Broking is one of the leading share broker of India with more than 3 dacades into stock broking.

Get more information about Angel Broking in this review post.

They also have waived off the account opening fee. You will get free AMC for lifetime by paying Rs 2500 as one time charges.

However, this amount is not refundable.

Angel Broking brokerage charges are on lower side when compared to other brokers. However, they are still high in comparison to discount brokers.

Recently they have also introduced Rs15/executed trade plan owing to cut throat competition from top discount stock brokers.

Below table illustrates the brokerage charges of Angel Broking

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#7 Sharekhan Demat Account

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Sharekhan is third largest stock broker of India as on today (First two are Zerodha and ICICI Direct)

You will find the outlet of Sharekhan at every major cities and towns of India.

Sharekhan has waived of Account opening fee.

They have also waived off AMC for the first year and it will be Rs 400/year from second year onwards.

Only negative point is thatt, heir brokerage charges are on higher side. Being a full service broker, they charge on the percentage of traded value.

Below table has the details of Sharekhan Brokerage Charges

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#5 Angel Broking Demat Account

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Angel Broking is one of the leading share broker of India with more than 3 dacades into stock broking.

They also have waived off the account opening fee. You will get free AMC for lifetime by paying Rs 2500 as one time charges.

However, this amount is not refundable.

Angel Broking brokerage charges are on lower side when compared to other brokers. However, they are still high in comparison to discount brokers.

Recently they have also introduced Rs15/executed trade plan owing to cut throat competition from top discount stock brokers.

Below table illustrates the brokerage charges of Angel Broking

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#Bonus: ICICI Direct Demat Account

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ICICI Direct was the biggest stock broker of India until replaced by Zerodha. They are the one who popularised the online trading in India.

To know more about ICICI Direct, check out this review post.

ICICI Direct also offers free demat account , but only on meeting below criteria.

Those who intends to avail free demat account with ICIC Direct,

  • Should have demat with any other broker and value of the holding should be more than Zero
  • Should be ICICI Bank Customers with Silver, Gold and Titanium categories

The best part of ICICI direct is , it is a 3-in-1 demat account. That means, Demat account, Trading account and ICICI Bank Savings account are interlinked.

And the worst part is their brokerage charges.

Just compare the below brokerage table of ICICI Direct with any other broker and you will make out what I am saying.

Life Time Free Demat and Trading Account : Final thoughts

In my view and also based on my experience in the stock market, I can definitely vouch for the good customer service any day over free demat account.

Demat account opening fee and AMC charges are significant. But they are one time and yearly once kind of charges.

So you should be less worried about them and always prefer a best demat account. Let me explain you with an example

Lets say you trade shares of worth Rs 1lakh and pay 0.5% as brokerage. So it will be Rs 500 on purchase and Rs 500 on sale.

If I had opened demat account with a broker who charges Rs0 in terms of brokerage charges, then I would have saved Rs1000 straight away.

Because of this, my recommendation for you is to focus on brokerage charges and customer support instead of preferring free demat account.

I trade with Zerodha. Since I know that I am using the biggest stock broker of India, I am pretty much assured about safety of my funds also. There were some instances of few brokers like BMA Wealth Creators & Unicorn Securities going bankrupt in recent times.

So, I suggest you to open account with Zerodha or Upstox and dont worry too much about saving few rupees in AMCs.

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