Foreclosed homes may be more trouble than they’re worth

Although data continues to show that the United States is in the midst of a fragile housing recovery, the fact remains that there are still a record number of foreclosed properties on the market.

For potential homebuyers, there are pros to purchasing these kinds of homes. They're generally pretty cheap and they can be a great buy for people who are looking for a fixer-upper. One thing to be aware of, however, is that foreclosed homes could come with a whole slew of problems that may not be immediately apparent, so it's important to have a professional perform a home inspection before you get out your checkbook.

Educational website Investing Answers recently wrote an article uncovering some of the craziest ways that people have destroyed their foreclosed homes, which should help people better understand the importance of a home inspection.

There's the homeowner from Tampa Bay, for example, who dragged a garden hose through his window so the water would flood his home. Then there's the Texas man who dumped concrete into his drains and punched holes in the walls.

Often having their houses taken away in a foreclosure causes people's emotions to run high, and believe it or not, these stories about homeowners wreaking havoc on their property before officially exiting it aren't all that uncommon.

When you purchase a foreclosed home, you really don't know what you're getting until you have a professional take a look at it. Thankfully, there are home inspection contractors who know what to look for and can help you determine if a foreclosed property is really worth the price or if there are hidden problems that could wind up costing a small fortune to fix.