Mad FIentist

Brandon Ganch is a computer programmer-turned-financial expert, musician, blogger, and podcaster.

The Mad Fientist emerged from his laboratory in early 2012 with two goals:

1) Research and develop strategies to reach financial independence sooner

2) Talk to other people who already retired early to find out how they did it

To achieve the first goal, he analyzed the tax code, created a lot of spreadsheets, and ran experiments.  These efforts lead to the discovery of many innovative tax-avoidance methods that helped him retire years earlier.

For the second goal, he launched the Financial Independence Podcast and has since interviewed dozens of early retirees to find out their financial secrets.

In 2016, at the age of 34, the Mad Fientist was able to walk away from his career as a computer programmer for good.  He now spends his time creating free financial and travel-hacking software, writing, and making weird noises on synthesizers.

Now, he’s conclusively reached an audience with over 300,000+ pageviews per month amassed on his website, and 2.5 million podcast downloads.

Isn’t it better to be rich than to look rich?
— The Mad FIentist

watch playing with fire

A documentary about the FIRE movement and one families quest to achieve financial independence and retire early. Available on the following:

Get your copy of the


A perfect follow up on the film to dive deeper into the philosophies and "how-tos of the FIRE movement"
Playing the FIRE book image

Reading material

We have assembled the foundational information to get your start on the right foot down the FIRE path to financial independence.

How to Reach Financial Independence

Now that you know what FIRE is and why there is a growing movement of people who are aspiring to reach FIRE — or who have already succeeded — you might start wondering if this is something you could achieve.

Playing with FIRE forward

Playing with FIRE book forward written by Pete Adeney, a.k.a. Mr. Money Mustache

What is the Mega-Backdoor Roth Strategy?

Individuals with high incomes are usually not allowed to use a Roth IRA, but a mega-backdoor Roth conversion strategy is one way for these individuals to contribute up to $39,500 to a Roth IRA, get the tax-free benefits on the growth of these monies, and then withdraw the funds in retirement.