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Unfortunately, the owner cannot recognize a capital loss on the sale of the boat, because it is a personal use asset
You must recognize capital gains on the sale of personal use assets, but you are not allowed to recognize capital losses.
So the answer to your question is unfortunately, no - he cannot take a capital loss to offset the capital gain.
This would not be able to be claimed as a rental property unless he actively rented it and received rental income
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I thought that was the case...but just wanted to confirm.