An in-depth review of 10 of the most popular FIRE blogs worldwide, including information about the authors and the content that they publish. After reading this article, you will better understand what FIRE is, why it is so popular, and the style of content on offer to assist you in your own FIRE journey.
The Financial Independence, Retire Early (FIRE) movement is one from which followers learn to live a life, usually in their 20s and 30s, of extreme savings and investment. They do so for one purpose: to achieve financial freedom and ultimately retire much younger than the standard age of 65. In fact, most aim for the young age bracket of 30-40.
The FIRE movement gained popularity among millennials in 2010 with the rise of blogs, podcasts, and online forums. Fast forward to 2022, with post-covid movements such as WFH and The Great Resignation, it makes complete sense that the movement is now gaining traction among Gen Z. In this article, we help you sort through the multitude of FIRE information sources available by giving you our Top 10 FIRE blogs worldwide so you can begin your path to financial independence.
Why are FIRE blogs so popular?
If there is one thing that people value more than money, it’s time. As the old adage goes: “money returns, time doesn’t.” However, the uncomfortable truth is that we cannot have one, without giving away some of the other. The traditional solution to this problem is to work 5 days a week, for 45 years, and cherish a couple of weeks every year that we get to spend away from our jobs.
The FIRE movement is so popular because it flips this traditional model on its head. By condensing your hard-working, money-making years into 1 or 2 decades instead of 4 and making that money work for you, you can buy yourself many more years of pure, unadulterated time and freedom to do the things you enjoy.
What are the Top 10 FIRE blogs Worldwide?
Mr. Money Mustache
Mr. Money Mustache is a blog started back in 2011 by a man who was then in his mid-30s and already retired. He started the blog when he noticed most of his friends were still complaining about being broke, without realizing how much their lifestyles were costing them, and he wanted to help.
Now, in 2022, Mr. Money Mustache is one of the world’s leading FIRE blogs and has been featured on websites such as Forbes and Business Insider. The blog’s author still posts once every 1-3 months, with topics ranging from advice for FIRE beginners to observations from his own experience as a FIRE success story. The site also has a forum for readers who have questions or something to contribute themselves.
The Mad Fientist
The Mad Fientist is a little different from most blogs in that it is more of a place to find out information regarding the contents of podcast episodes. The Mad Fientist recently celebrated his 10th anniversary of achieving financial independence and starting his own podcast, which was seemingly inspired by Mr. Money Mustache himself, as he was the podcast’s first guest.
Each blog post shares the highlights and transcript of the corresponding podcast episode, as well as relevant links related to the episode and a link to the episode itself. The podcast explores various topics, from annual “post-FIRE” updates from The Mad Fientist, to tips for those on their own FIRE journey, to stories from well-known guests about their personal experiences with the pursuit and achievement of FIRE.
The Frugalwoods is a family-run FIRE blog started in 2014 by Mrs. Frugalwoods, as she is affectionately known. The blog was started before the couple had their two young daughters and moved to rural Vermont, where they now embrace a life of simplicity and, you guessed it, frugality.
Mrs. Frugalwoods’s perspective and writing style, she says, has evolved since having her children and making the move to the country but her emphasis on income vs. expenses as the key to FIRE success has remained constant. She attributes her family’s financial independence to this key concept, stating that the higher your income, the more you can save. The Frugalwoods frequently post reader case studies, money tips for travel and pets, advice for current affairs such as COVID-19 and inflation, and much more.
A Purple Life
A Purple Life is a blog started in 2015 by a 25-year-old girl who created a plan to achieve early retirement by 2025, at age 35. By decreasing her expenses and increasing her income throughout her journey, she was able to cut her 10-year plan in half and reached financial independence aged 30 in 2020.
She continues her blog today with weekly updates on her life as an early retiree, including posts about travel she has undertaken, her other hobbies such as film and fitness, and even net worth updates and other financial information for her followers to see. If you’re after a FIRE blog with transparent numbers to help you plan for your early retirement, then this is the blog for you. You can listen to my podcast interview with A Purple Life HERE.
JL Collins started his blog in mid-2011 for the sole purpose, he says, of documenting his journey and helpful financial information for his daughter Jessica. Since then, it has grown into one of the most respected FIRE blogs on the web. The blog remains dedicated to her, and his wife Jane, today.
Before being able to retire, “Jim” worked many jobs ranging from busboy all the way to motivational speaker and sales trainer. His blog includes reader case studies, information on home ownership, and, his most popular section, a stock series. If this vast array of content isn’t quite quenching your thirst, Jim has even written 2 books, one about the FIRE movement and one about Real Estate.
You can find my review of The Simple Path to Wealth by JL Collins HERE.
Physician on FIRE
Physician on FIRE is quite a unique FIRE blog, as its author, Leif, intends to target an audience who aim to achieve FIRE with a high income, late start, and larger than average education debt, as he has done himself. Leif is a retired anaesthesiologist with a wife and 2 sons who started his blog in 2016 in order to “enlighten, educate, and entertain” his readers.
Leif writes several blog posts per week, mainly focussing on the “how-to” of pursuing FIRE, with a section dedicated entirely to problems faced by physicians. If this specific approach isn’t for you, though, then fear not; Leif also posts a “Sunday Best” round-up each week which includes his top pick of FIRE articles from other sources that week.
Millennial Money Honey
Millenial Money Honey is a pre-FIRE blog run by a young lady named Catie, who is based in California and is on a journey to achieve FIRE by age 35. She says her journey began in 2017 when she refrained from purchasing new things and realised just how much money she could save, and subsequently invest.
From 2017 to late-2021, Catie regularly documented her journey with monthly blog posts including her spending figures for the previous month and other helpful information such as gift ideas for those on a FIRE-style budget. While she hasn’t posted on her blog recently, Catie is still very active on her YouTube channel where she posts new FIRE content weekly.
Camp FIRE Finance
Camp FIRE Finance is a blog “For those seeking FIRE, by those seeking FIRE.” It was founded in early 2018 by Ty Roberts, and since late 2019 is now run by Jackie Beck.
Jackie and a team of “Camp FIRE contributors” are responsible for blog posts exclusive to Camp FIRE. However, the majority of Camp FIRE’s content is crowd-sourced; every weekday, the team actually features articles from other personal finance blogs on the internet as well as maintains a feed of the latest FIRE-related articles posted on the net within the last 24 hours. This is the perfect blog site for those readers after a variety of opinions and perspectives from countless authors, all in one place.
Jess and Corey started The Fioneers in late 2018 with travel in mind. With the bold ambition of travelling 100 countries together, the couple seek FIRE for the freedom it brings, rather than the wealth itself. The blog’s name, intentionally rhyming with “Pioneers,” reflects their love for adventure and their belief that “the journey should be as remarkable as the destination.”
The couple’s love for adventuring and appreciating the journey has led them to shape both their blog and lifestyle around what they call “Slow FI:” the principle that one should not give up several years of their life working too hard in order to retire as early as possible, but instead should accept small wins and freedoms along the way. Their Slow FI Manifesto and Slow FI Interview Series are two popular sections of their blog that delve further into this concept.
When you land on Grant Sabatier’s blog, Millennial Money, you will find a ‘choose your own adventure’ of topics to choose from: make, invest, save, borrow, and finally, life you love. The reason for this is that Grant has extensive experience doing all of these things. Starting with $2 in his bank account after college, and after 2000 hours of study and 300 books later, Grant was able to achieve financial independence in just 6 years, aged 30, with 3 successful companies under his belt.
Now, Grant’s mission for Millennial Money is to make financial freedom accessible to all. Each section of his blog is jam-packed full of suggestions, recommendations and strategies for achieving financial independence with a proven track record of success.
With the rise in popularity of the FIRE movement and the accessibility of information on the internet today, thousands of people are achieving FIRE and sharing their success stories for all to see. Now, armed with these 10 highly regarded FIRE information sources and a little bit of dedication, you, too, can reach financial independence and win back your time. Maybe you’ll even start the world’s next FIRE blog!
You can find my list of the Top Ten FIRE Blogs in Australia HERE.
Captain FI is a Retired Pilot who lives in Adelaide, South Australia. He is passionate about Financial Independence and writes about Personal Finance and his journey to reach FI at 29, allowing him to retire at 30.