An MOT certificate system for properties in the private rental sector would help improve standards, claims a provider of inventory services.

Nick Lyons, chief executive and founder of No Letting Go, said: "An MOT report, ensuring a property meets a minimum standard, alongside an independently and professionally compiled inventory would ensure that everything about a property's condition and contents is suitably documented at the start of a tenancy.

"This would protect all sides of the rental transaction and reduce the chances of either landlords or tenants being unfairly left out of pocket at the end of a contract.

No Letting Go says the MOT idea has already been put forward in the recent review of the private rental sector conducted by University of York academics Dr Julie Rugg and David Rhodes.

Their report, released in the early autumn, advocated MOT-style reports with minimum standards required to indicate whether a property was fit for letting.

No Letting Go says MOT-style reports would complement the Homes (Fitness for Human Habitation) Bill which is set to become law this spring.

The measure requires homes to be fit for human habitation before letting with the aim of reducing problems, such as damp, mould and unsafe living conditions.

Mr Lyons added: "As we can see from the work the government is doing around the private rental sector, this innovation would fit squarely with their aims and mark another step towards raising the standard of privately rented properties.”

For helpful tips on preparing an inventory, check out our Simple Landlords guide to taking an inventory.

Richard Truman, Head of Operations at Simple Landlords Insurance, said: “A detailed inventory means you can clearly evidence the condition of your property and contents before tenants move in - and show the extent of any damage during their tenancy.

“That’s particularly useful if you need to make a claim on your insurance, or if you need to retain any of the deposit in your Tenant Deposit Scheme.”