Who We Are
The Tiny House of Happiness is a short-term tiny house rental that integrates minimalism, sustainable living, and the science of well-being to help people live more fulfilling and meaningful lives in thoughtful relationship to their stuff.
To create a world were happiness is found through connection, not consumption.
Seek continuous improvement
Value people over profit
Build meaningful relationships
Take care of the earth
Act in love; always
The concept for The Tiny House of Happiness came from the intersection of Founder Danny Torrance’s work, passions, and interests in the science of positive psychology, hoarding intervention, and the tiny house movement. Danny received a Master’s degree in Applied Positive Psychology (MAPP) from the University of Pennsylvania in 2015, where he studied the habits, traits, and conditions that help individuals, communities, and organizations thrive.
He discovered that greater well-being often comes from non-material things like our relationships, finding meaning in life, and being connected with nature. This sparked his interest in minimalism and the tiny house movement, which promotes a lifestyle built around other people and meaningful experiences rather than material possessions.
After receiving his MAPP degree, Danny worked in non-profit organizations supporting individuals and employees and developed a specialization in hoarding intervention through the Philadelphia Hoarding Task Force. From this experience, he gained a deeper understanding of how a strong attachment to possessions can lead to an accumulation of stuff that jeopardizes one’s health, safety, and well-being. In his work with clients, he encourages them to keep what’s most important while practicing sorting and discarding strategies to let go of the excess that is holding them back.
Danny noticed the common thread through his work is our relationship with our stuff. Material possessions play an essential role in our lives, but they can often leave us feeling unfulfilled and create health and safety risks when we place too high of an importance on them. Studies show that American consumerism hasn’t delivered on its promise that we'll be happier if we consume more and buy bigger and better things. Ironically, the opposite is true. Happiness is a byproduct of living a life of greater meaning, intentionality, and connection. The tiny house movement puts this in practice and the science of positive psychology uncovers these insights through rigorous research studies, yet, there hasn’t been much of a connection between these two communities until now. Seeing this opportunity for collaboration and integration, Danny envisioned opening a tiny house rental that helped individuals learn and practice the habits of sustainable happiness from the science of positive psychology. That’s how the seed for The Tiny House of Happiness was planted.
We’re excited to offer our guests the experience of staying in a cozy tiny house while providing them with the time, space, and resources to learn about, practice, and reflect on activities that promote a life of greater meaning and fulfillment.
All of our guests receive a copy of our workbook which includes a suggested schedule of readings, activities, and reflection prompts for guests to complete during their stay. The topics in the workbook include:
Connecting with Nature
Your stay in the tiny house is the first step of a larger journey towards living the life you want to live. The last step in the workbook is to reflect on how you can integrate your key insights and best moments from your stay back into your daily life.
One thing to note about the experience is that our tiny house does not have Wifi or a TV (but we do have excellent cell service). Our hope is that guests will be able to experience the benefits of replacing screen time with green time to feel refreshed, relaxed, and rejuvenated during their stay.
The Tiny House of Happiness is located in the Farm at Awbury Arboretum, a 56-acre vibrant and historic botanical garden in Philadelphia’s Germantown and Mt. Airy neighborhoods. The Farm at Awbury provides a peaceful environment for you to relax and connect with nature while being within a short walk, drive, or bus ride to local shops, restaurants, historic sites, and parks in the surrounding neighborhoods.
We’re located 8 miles northwest of the heart of Center City Philadelphia, which is accessible by a 27-minute train ride on SEPTA’s Chestnut Hill East line, the XH bus to the Broad Street Subway, or by car. However you travel, you’ll have easy access to all of the fine restaurants, events, and other experiences the city offers.
If you’d rather retreat further into nature than venture into the city, we’re a short 10-minute drive or a 30-minute bus ride to the Wissahickon Valley Park, which has more than 50 miles of walking, hiking, and biking trails through dense forest, open meadows, and shaded creeks.
No matter how you’d like to spend your time, The Tiny House of Happiness is conveniently located to everything you’ll need to enjoy your stay and experience greater well-being.