Doing your homework
Craig at Rain City Guide has a post on doing your homework when buying a condo, The condo public offering statement/resale certificate:
The Seattle Times had a good piece on the topic a couple of years ago. That article notes several sources of information that you should review prior to purchasing, including the public offering statement (for new construction) or the resale certificate (for a previously owned unit). In reality, your homework can begin and end with the public offering statement or resale certificate, as by law each of these must contain the information necessary to make an informed decision.