I'm in the market for a ZTR and wanted to get a little input from you guys. I'm a homeowner with 2 yards to keep mowed, mine and my mother-in-law's. My yard is approximately 4 acres, relatively flat with a dip here and there, but a tad ruff in places. It use to be a hay field, if that helps. My mother-in-law's yard is approximately 2 acres and hilly but doesn't have anything I'd classify as steep. What I want is a ZTR that can handle both and last me a long time, but I don't expect it to last a lifetime. I want one that will give a good cut, but don't require a golf course quality cut. I'd also like to have one that will accept a bagger, as I may add one a year or so down the road. I'd like a bagger mainly for picking up leaves and I occassionally allow the grass to get a tad too deep and the wife screams about the way the clippings on top make the yard look. I'm leaning towards a 48" or 52" deck. I have several different ones to choose from in the area. They are: Grasshopper (full service shop, also a Snapper & Husqvarna dealer but doesn't stock their ZTR) ExMark (full service shop) John Deere (full service shop) Ferris (full service shop) Cub Cadet (Lowes, TSC, & etc, ie no service) There may be others I'm not aware of as well. I have a good long-time relationship with the mechanic at the Grasshopper dealer. He claims the grasshopper rides a whole lot better than the ExMark his competitor sales, BTW. The other dealers I have never dealt with but I hear good things about the Exmark dealer in general. My main question is this. Are the commercial grade ZTRs worth the extra cost as opposed to something like the Cub Cadet which is about 1/2 the cost of the others? I'm having a hard time justifing a $7500+ lawn mower, but at the same time I don't want a piece of junk that will be in the shop more than in the yard. There is an MTD plant close by, I don't think that plant makes the Cub Cadet ZTRs, but from what I hear the quality of their mowers in general is in question. For the past 15 years I've ran a RER Snapper, which is still going strong even though it's on it's 3rd engine. But it since I bought this 4 acre lot it is just too small for it, so I'm looking for something bigger. Is there a good ZTR out there to be had for in the $5000 range that meets these qualifications? Everything I've looked at has been $7000 and up, except the Cub Cadets which are $2999 at Lowes. My pick of the bunch is the Ferris IS1500Z with a 52" deck. But the salesman will probably need a crowbar to pry all that $$$ out of my hand.