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Remodeling Large TV Niches - Has anyone tackled this problem yet?

last year
last modified: last year

Hello All! We just bought a 90's home in the metro Phoenix area and we have two large niches next to the fireplace that were designed for an old school TV set up. We want to get rid of them and remodel the fireplace and we are torn - should we just sheetrock over the niches to allow for a wall mounted flat screen TV and update the fireplace surround OR should we take out the fireplace altogether (it is the desert after all) and make a larger wall area? The third option, although I haven't priced it yet, is to covert the fireplace to gas and center it on the wall with a tv above. The room has vaulted ceilings and is part of an open floor plan with the kitchen to the left.

I've included two photos - the first is the before from the previous homeowner, and the second is while we were installing wood look plank tiles throughout the house.

Would love to hear your experiences! Thanks, Peggy

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