To address your concerns, I wouldn't say there's a "catch" in foreclosures. It's important to get a home inspection when you're purchasing any type of home (i.e. resale, foreclosure, & even a new home). A home inspection helps to reveal any problems with the home.
Also, I truly believe it's a common myth that foreclosures are trashes with vandalism caused by the disgruntled previous owner. I disagree with this common notion because these homeowners have become emotionally attached to their home and are not as likely to trash it, even if they are losing it to foreclosure. A foreclosure is just a misfortune to someone's situation and isn't necesarily a reflection of the homeowner's character. As a matter of fact, I've viewed the interiors of many nice foreclosures that are in move in condition. I believe that the majority of "trashed" foreclosures are the work of vandals and/or squatters looking for a place to crash. You typically won't get much vandalism in nicer, family friendly neighborhoods. The majority of vandalism, in my opinion, tends to be in the intown neighborhoods.
As far as there being a lot of foreclosures in Marietta, that's just a sign of the times. Unfortunately, some areas have impacted more severly than others in terms of foreclosures. A lot of times this is simply because people have gotten into buying homes with prices way over their heads. It's a fact that foreclosures are evident in all type of neighborhoods, including upscale, exclusive neighborhoods.
I truly believe that in today's market, we have to be more wise in the way we purchase real estate. Not to take advantage of someone's misfortune, but today's buyer can benefit from foreclosures. Not only are you able to find nice foreclosed homes, you also have the potential at instant equity and you save money. I like to think of foreclosures as bargain shopping. Just like buying a car, a 2008 model is just as good as a 2005. It's the same body type just different year & more miles.
I would love to help you find some foreclosures that meet your criteria. What type of home are you looking for?