Read The Documents
Nothing exists in the English language more boring than the Declarations and Bylaws of a condominium! They are written in legalese and contain seemingly dozens of subparagraphs and subparts to each numbered section. For experienced condominium lawyers these documents make sense, but to even extremely well-educated owners or association members, they can be confusing and even seem contradictory. First, read and try to understand them. Then, after you have a basic idea of what they say, call a lawyer!
Call a lawyer!
There is nothing to be ashamed of in admitting that these documents are confusing to you. Just as I would not recommend we perform dentistry or brain surgery on ourselves, I would not recommend that property owners or members of a condominium association or board try to "figure it out themselves." It just is that specialized and requires an expert to guide you along.
But lawyers are expensive, aren't they?
So are condominium lawsuits! The last thing anyone should ever wish to be involved in is a lawsuit involving a condominium. They are nearly guaranteed to eat up countless resources, time, and create animosity. A review of your condominium's Declarations, Bylaws, and Rules may actually anticipate and prevent disputes before they occur. Having a lawyer review these documents is much like preventative medicine. You may find things that you don't want to find, but you can also take steps to repair and/or avoid them before they become serious.
You insure your car and your health so why not "insure" your home?
Think of having a lawyer review your condominium documents as a way of protecting your investment--often the largest purchase in your lifetime. A bit of money invested in your home now can make it a better investment and provide you piece of mind in the future!