I'd have to agree that if you are not going to get a commercial mower, I'd go with Toro.
I have been in the same boat, and mowing 10-12 yards for 2 years now with a Toro 22". Had a craftsman the first year, and it was getting tired already.
Just keep your blade sharp, as it is easier on the engine, and keep it nicely oiled. save up and prepare if it ever goes out.
mine has paid for itself ten times over, and made well enough to upgrade when the time comes.
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