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Call for building industry Royal Commission that would include cladding issue

The Builders Collective of Australia has thrown its support behind a petition calling for a Royal Commission into the building industry that has collected almost 25,000 signatures.

“Home owners in Australia are being impacted by a broken building industry causing emotional distress, financial ruin, family dynamics and distress, and only a Royal Commission will arrest the downfall,” says the Builders Collective, which has its own similar petition and now is also supporting the change.org appeal launched by Mascot Towers apartment owner Andrew Burrell.

“The cladding issue, the lack of consumer protection, the quality of buildings, the quality of trades, and a culture not aligned with a fair go, all contribute to massive building failures in Australia,” says the Builders Collective. “Home owners with flammable cladding are being targeted to pay for the industry’s failure with bills arriving out of the blue of up to $100k when they in fact purchased a fully compliant building.”

“Key stakeholders who work at the coal face have been ignored and continue to be held captive by unconscionable government behaviour which continues to deliver regulatory outcomes that further compound accountability at the top of the chain. A short sharp Royal Commission will expose all the shortfalls of the national building industry.”

A report by UNSW has shown that 85% of all apartments built in NSW between 2002 & 2012 had defects.

Burrell, the owner of a unit in Mascot Towers in Sydney, says: “After hearing previously on the news about Opal Towers we thought it would not happen to us, yet here we are! Believe me the building industry problems coming to the surface are just the tip of the iceberg as evident in news of the apartments in Zetland, Erskineville, Alexandria and so on.

“It is criminal that Corporations Law allows limited liability companies to be used by unscrupulous players at all levels of the building industry to profit from the misfortune of others. Conflicts of interest are rife in the industry at all levels including the support structures that are supposed to help the end user, us the home buyer and owner.

“Pouring your life savings into your home is considered a fulfilment of the 'Australian Dream' and yet the business structures and processes around one of our single most expensive purchases and assets is riddled with a cancer that needs to be excised sooner rather than later," says Burrell.

“Please sign the petition and distribute it widely so that we can pressure our Governments to take action and save the future for our children and not just for those greedy banks, developers, builders, sub-contractors, insurance companies, and strata and building management companies where self-interest permeates at every level.”

You can sign the petition here.