Enough powers: Commissioner

He said the commission had enough powers now, despite calls from building companies, consumers and property lawyers to change the way it operates.

�Building companies are required to confirm their financial viability to be registered and each time they are re-registered, typically every three years,� he said.

�The Building Commission has comprehensive powers to investigate breaches of building legislation, including failure to notify financial difficulty.

�However, the primary role in regulating corporations and insolvent trading lies with the Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC).�

Mr Gow said Benchmark Homes were obliged to tell the Commission if they were in financial difficulty.

�We can and do investigate builder conduct, including when builders get into financial difficulty,� he said. �The Building Commission cannot run builders� affairs and cannot manage the relationship between individual builders and consumers.

�A building company is required under State builder registration laws to notify the Building Services Board through the Building Commission if there is a change in its eligibility to be registered or if it is unable to pay its debts when and if they fall due.�