Downsizing — and Still Working

Since meeting 25 years ago, Rachel and Ben Rosin have been building a life together, with a steady, workmanlike approach that includes planning, saving, and a positive outlook. “We’ve been lucky,” Rachel says.

At the height of their careers — Rachel, a jewelry expert, and Ben, an attorney who was a partner at a boutique practice  — each had earned well, saved for retirement and lived comfortably in Chappaqua. “A lot of money came in, but a lot went out,” Ben says.

After Ben’s four children from his previous marriage graduated from college, the Rosins traded their four-bedroom ranch for a condo in Briarcliff Manor and netted a decent profit while cutting their annual tax burden. That money went straight into a retirement-savings account. They also had long-term healthcare insurance, and Rachel, while in her 20s, took out an annuity and saved heavily in a 401K. “That was the best thing I could do for myself,” Rachel says.

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Despite their long-term planning, Ben, 76, and Rachel, 69, still work: Ben puts in three days a week as a foster-care attorney, which is personally rewarding, and Rachel runs her own consulting company, a new career she carved out in her 50s that is far less lucrative but still provides job satisfaction. 

Although they aren’t earning what they once did, they aren’t opulent consumers. Working keeps them busy, social, and helps pays for their monthly bills, such as condominium fees, dinners out, and at least once nice trip a year. “Even with investments, a 401K, and an IRA, you’ve got to supplement it,” Ben says. 

The key to their success: saving, planning ahead and enjoying their work. “Before you know it, you’ll be in your 60s,” Rachel says.  “It’s important to do something you like doing.”

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