What is a Demat Account What is a Demat Account

What is a Demat Account? Uses, Benefits & Requirements

A Demat or dematerialized account or a is a necessity for participating in the stock market. It holds the shares and securities of the investors in an electronic format.

The introduction of the Demat account marked a pivotal shift from physical share certificates to digital holdings.

In this article, let’s dive into what is a Demat account and understand its uses, benefits, and the essential requirements for opening one.

What is a Demat Account?

A Demat account is a digital repository that holds the shares and securities in electronic format. During trading, investors purchase and store shares within their Demat accounts.

Other than stocks, it can hold mutual funds, bonds, ETFs, and other market instruments.

Demat trading was first introduced in the year 1996 in India for trading on the National Stock Exchange. SEBI regulations mandated the dematerialization of all shares and debentures of listed companies by March 31st, 2019.

Now Demat accounts have become a prerequisite for anyone engaging in transactions on any stock exchange.

There are 3 types of Demat accounts:

  • Regular Demat Accounts: A regular Demat account can be opened by a residing Indian citizen.
  • Repatriable Demat Account: A repatriable Demat account can be opened by Non-Resident Indians. It allows for the transfer of funds from overseas, provided it is linked to an NRE bank account.
  • Non-repatriable Demat Accounts: A non-repatriable Demat account can also be opened by Non-Resident Indians. However, this account cannot be used to transfer funds. To operate this account, it has to be linked with a Non-Resident Ordinary Account (NRO).

Uses of a Demat Account

Here are the main uses of a Demat account

1. Storing Securities Electronically

It serves as a secure electronic repository for storing various securities. All types of securities including stocks, bonds, mutual funds, and other financial instruments can be stored in it.

2. Easy and Quick Transactions

Investors can easily buy and sell their shares online using their Demat accounts. Trading in securities using Demat accounts is significantly faster than traditional methods involving physical share certificates.

3. Receiving Stock Dividends & Benefits

A Demat account streamlines the process for receiving dividends, interest payments, refunds, etc. associated with investments. These are automatically credited to the investor’s account.

Moreover, Demat accounts utilise depository services to ensure updates regarding corporate actions such as rights offerings, stock splits, bonus issues, and public issues.

4. Portfolio Management

Using Demat accounts investors can monitor and manage their investment portfolios with ease. They can track the performance of their holdings, view transaction history, and analyse market trends in real-time.

Benefits of a Demat Account

Here are the main benefits. 

1. Safety and Security

It holds securities in a digital format. This eliminates the risks associated with physical share certificates, such as loss, theft, or damage.

2. Convenience

Investors can access their portfolios online and monitor their holdings, track transactions, and execute trades from the comfort of their homes or offices. This eliminates the need for physical paperwork and visits to intermediaries’ offices.

3. Increased Liquidity/Speed

One of the key advantages of Demat accounts is the quick transfer of securities. Shares can be easily bought and sold online helping active traders capitalise on market opportunities. This also increases the liquidity of these securities by making it more convenient to get money.

4. Reduced Costs

Demat accounts generally have lower transaction fees as compared to physical trading. It eliminates the need for paper-based transactions and handling charges etc.

5. Easy Investment Storage

In addition to shares, investors can hold bonds, mutual funds, exchange-traded funds (ETFs), government securities, and other financial instruments in their Demat accounts. This all-in-one storage capability simplifies portfolio management.

6. Accessibility

Demat accounts offer easy access to investment portfolios anytime and anywhere. Through online platforms and mobile applications provided by brokerage firms or depository participants, investors can view their holdings, track performance, and execute transactions with utmost convenience.

7. Loan Facility

Investors can avail loans against securities held in their Demat accounts by pledging their eligible securities as collateral. Hence, investors can access funds without liquidating their investments.

8. Nomination Facility

Demat accounts also have a nomination facility whereby investors can nominate beneficiaries for their accounts ensuring a smooth transfer of assets in the unfortunate event of the account holder’s demise.

Requirements for opening a Demat Account

You need to meet the following criteria –

1. Eligibility Criteria

Opening a Demat account has no age restrictions. A minor’s parents or authorised guardians can open a Demat account in their name.

The following is the eligibility in India:

  • Resident individuals
  • Non Resident individuals
  • Corporate entities
  • Partnership firms
  • Banks
  • Registered or unregistered society
  • Registered or unregistered trust
  • Mutual funds

2. Documents Required to Open

Keep handy of the  following documents to open a demat account:

  • PAN card
  • Aadhar card
  • Address Proof
  • Passport-size photos
  • Your ID proof

If you wish to open, you can do so within a few minutes on Dhan, India’s leading investment and trading platform without any cost.


In this blog, we helped you understand what a Demat account is. It is a digital repository of shares and securities and is a prerequisite to trade in the Indian stock market.

It offers several benefits in terms of increased safety, conveniences, accessibility, and liquidity of securities. There is no age to open an account and even NRIs can open in India.

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Happy Investing 💰

Disclaimer: This blog is not to be construed as investment advice. Trading and investing in the securities market carries risk. Please do your own due diligence or consult a trained financial professional before investing.