Danielle Barnett has been the voice of successful dance group Urban Cookie Collective since 1998 and still tours with them worldwide.
After a stint in management, Danielle proved she had the secret to selecting a first home, after a lucky buy in her early 20s helped to springboard her career in public and motivational speaking, life coaching, therapy and hypnotherapy.
During lockdown, she has been creating 30-day confidence challenges and motivational minutes.
We chatted with her about her adventures in property.
When did you buy your first home?
I bought at 23 years-old and that’s the one I am still in 23 years later. This house was meant for me – it felt right.
I was managing a boy band called Point Break, who had a Top Ten hit in the UK and were big in Asia.
I had been living in my parents’ house and at one stage Point Break were living there, too. We were taking over my parents’ house, and so it was time for us to make a move.
The boys were rehearsing in the front room and we were like a big family, but I realised I needed to get my own place with a studio.
We had even been covering my mum and dad’s steam room with egg boxes to record vocals in.
What was on your property wishlist?
I knew I wanted something with potential, with somewhere I could build a studio and a rehearsal room.
It needed to be detached so we wouldn’t annoy the neighbours. I had a list of things I wanted.
Point Break had done the music for an advert with Brad Pitt in it in Asia and I was getting huge royalty cheques. For six months, ten countries in Asia played the advert constantly – that’s how I bought my first home.
Wow. Tell us more…
I literally went for a drive to let off steam, and was driving near Chigwell, Essex, with a friend.
I saw a house with a For Sale sign outside. I thought I’m going to knock on the door and I did.
This lady said my husband’s in bed at the moment but she showed us around anyway and I knew it had potential.
In the kitchen, I looked out and there was a huge building that turned out to be a 12-car garage. From the outside, it looked like a bungalow.
It was a huge space – I thought, ‘Oh my goodness this is it.’ Within a week, we made an offer, and in a month I bought it.
So you got the key but did you get the secret?
I got the key and the secret. We all have the key and the secret to any life we choose just by trusting ourselves and making moves to get it.
With an open mind and an open heart you will attract anything you want.
How are you so positive?
I live my life like that. I focus on what I can do rather than what I can’t do. There is always a new day, always a reset and a way forward.
If I have a challenging day, I surround myself with the people and things that I love and know tomorrow is a new start.
I trusted my gut instinct on this house and I visualised what I needed. Once you do visualisation then you will be open to attract what you see.
What’s the house like?
It was owned by an old couple but I could see glittering potential.
I found a lot of things on eBay – exactly what I wanted but for a fraction on the price – from the flooring to the French doors.
I bought cabinets on eBay, too. There are resources all around yourself, you just need to search for it.
My house is my security and passion and allows me to do what I want to do.
It is mine and I want to make it as inviting and as happy as possible. It is not always perfect and tidy but it is mine and I love it.
How has your home contributed in other ways?
I am a registered NLP master practitioner and life coach. I built an NLP therapy room and I have a pyramid skylight that I got from eBay, too.
It really is like a sanctuary, I have loads of little things that keep me grounded around the place. I have a piano in there – it has really good vibes.
The house is just an extension of me and it is also perfectly imperfect. By finding this perfect partner in a house it has grown me and helped me move forward.
Do you have a story to share?
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