Whatever you decide to do, you need to make sure it doesn’t mess up your retirement plan.
Pauline Muth of West Charlton, N.Y., was a junior high school science teacher who also loved shaping bonsai trees.
About 17 years ago she registered her home as a nursery and started selling supplies to other bonsai enthusiasts. By the time she retired from teaching six years ago at age 55, she had built a nice little business.
Once she could devote all her time to the enterprise, she considered an expansion. But she and her husband decided they wouldn’t jeopardize their security by siphoning funds from their retirement accounts.
The business “had to be self-sustaining,” Muth says. Now any money she makes from selling the miniature trees and the tools for tending them goes back into the business.
She also teaches bonsai classes and hopes to add an online store to her Web site.
Photo by pfm bonsai studio.
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