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From 6th April 2007 ALL deposits taken by landlords for Assured Shorthold Tenancies in England and Wales MUST be protected by a tenancy deposit protection scheme.

Landlords in England and Wales who fail to comply with the new law could be ordered by the courts to pay the tenant a penalty of 3 times the amount of the deposit.

If at the end of a tenancy the landlord and tenant cannot agree on the amount of deposit being returned (after deductions for damage or cleaning etc) the parties will go through the dispute service of the scheme that they have entered.

In such cases an inventory is now an essential proof of the contents of the property and in what condition the property was in at the start of the tenancy.
A check out report documents the condition of the property at the end of the tenancy in relation to the inventory and check in report (where present)

Do not think that because your property is unfurnished you do not need an inventory. The Inventory provides information about the condition of the property as well as the contents.