Best Budget Riding Lawn Mowers 2020 : Buying Guide & Reviews

Do you want a cheap, easy solution to get your backyard grass looking the best it can? Are you sick of the typical gas powered mowers? Well good news! If you don’t already have a riding lawn mower, then read on because this review is for you!

Here, we’ll be taking you through the 15 best inexpensive ride on mowers for those on a budget, better than your average Troy-Bilt. Some are even flashy, with features such as LED headlights.

We have an array of lawn tractors here for you, from those with zero turn, to those with the perfect turning radius, and some even have a cruise control setting.

Typical Cost of a Budget Riding Lawn Tractor / Mower

The first thing you’ll want to know is: how much does a ride on lawn mower tend to cost? How do you find the most inexpensive, best budget riding lawn tractors?

Well, initially, prices vary depending on what you need from your riding mower. For example, if you have less than an acre or two acres to cut, then you’ll want an a model that has a cutting deck towards the front. These are typically cheaper, and are more equipped to deal with tight spaces. What’s more, deck size can easily affect the price of your mower – if you’re going for a 42 inch deck, which is optimal, you’re going to look at a higher price.

The average price of the best cheaper ride on lawn mowers are at least around $1000, but can increase depending on your needs and the brand you opt for.

Considerations Choosing Cheap Riding Lawn Mowers

There are a number of key considerations and specs you’ll need to start with before you go making purchases.

Note – we also have a home tools section if you need a smaller grass cutter.

1. Garden Area

The first key consideration looks at the space you have available in your garden, and what type of area you’re dealing with. One of the most important matters, you’ll need to think about the length and growth of grass you want your mower to cut, the level of power needed, and the tasks you’ll be using your mower for. Some of the cheaper riding mowers are ideal if you have a smaller yard.

2. Collection Mowers

You might have to consider the different type of riding mowers with different collection methods. For example, cheaper mowers generally rely on the flow of air to push grass clippings into a collection bag, whilst more expensive ones use a powered sweeper. The cheaper riding lawn mower will use a rear collection mower, so before you buy your lawn mower look at the size of the collection bag.

3. Engine Size

It’s also key to consider the power and size of the engine of your lawn mower or lawn tractor. What sort of tasks will you use the mower for, and what sort of power will you need the engine to get up to?

The 15 Best Value Riding Mowers

Here are our 15 top picks for the best budget ride on lawnmower. We’ve handily added the Amazon page link into each listing, so you can scan and peruse at your leisure and go through to check it out for yourself. Have a read to find the best model for your yard!

1.Husqvarna Kawasaki Mower

Husqvarna Kawasaki - best budget riding lawn mower

Our first pick of the cheapest lawn devices is the Husqvarna MZ61 Kawasaki model. With its zero turn and 24 horsepower engine, it’s sure to suit all of your needs.

Pros
  • Ergonomic Comfort – This model comes with a high back seat, armrests, and foam padded hand grips with vibration dampeners to reduce vibrations. This makes mowing a fun and comfortable task for hours on end! Riding has never been easier.
  • Collection System – The rear collection bag collects grass clippings which can be discharged or mulched from a 9-bushel triple bag. An effective way to dispose of waste while undertaking any mowing task.
Cons
  • Assembly – A lot of reviewers note that the assembly process of this model is rather difficult, and the model comes with no hardware to hook up the battery cable.
  • Brake Handle – Some users have found the position of the brake handle to be a little inconvenient – it is so low that it can easily catch loose clothing and cause the mower to stop. Make sure you’re wearing appropriate clothing before you start!

2.Husqvarna Kohler Riding Mower

Husqvarna Kohler - ride on lawnmowers

This next item is quite similar to the one above – it’s the Husqvarna Z254 Kohler Hydrostatic Zero Turn model. Like pick 1, it comes equipped with zero turn technology and even has the benefit of hydrostatic transmission.

Pros
  • Cutting Desk – This model comes with 54 inch steel cutting decks, which is perfect for all of your needs. It’s one of the best zero turn mowers, and offers the best lawn trimming functions… no more trampling the flower beds!
  • Versatility – With the 26 horsepower engine, the air induction technology, and zero turn mechanism, this machine offers an array of benefits to support its riders and their overall experience. This model can be used on a variety of terrains, and is an option that provides flexibility.
Cons
  • Warranty and Customer Service – Some users have noted unhappiness in their warranty deal. There’s no description of the company’s two year warranty system on the listing.
  • Engine – Some people have given subpar ratings due to this machine’s ineffective engine, which definitely is not ideal if you want to hit the ground running. Make sure you spot relevant details on the company website to avoid a downside or problem like this.

3.Husqvarna Briggs and Stratton

Husqvarna Briggs and Stratton - ride on lawn mower

Another one of our  affordable lawn tractors from Husqvarna here, this is the YTH18542 model, complete with an 18.5 HP Briggs Stratton power source.

Pros
  • Turning Radius – The tight 16 inch turning radius and impressive steering system gives users a greater amount of freedom and maneuverability in smaller yards – you can mow in tight spaces and navigate around obstacles… way easier than a push mower, with its easy to operate systems!
  • Hydrostatic Transmission – As opposed to automatic transmission or manual transmission, this transmission system is operated by a foot pedal, which allows you to maintain driving and steering control while you change direction with foot pedals… how easy to use and get your grass cut!
Cons
  • Return Issues – Again a very popular criticism amongst consumer reports, users have noticed that the two year warranty doesn’t cover a lot of issues that might go wrong with this riding mower… make sure you keep the email address handy for customer complaints.
  • Pricey Repairs – If any maintenance or repair work needs to be done to increase performance, reviews suggest you might have an issue… users of this product and other products have noted staggering repair fees… check the company’s website to see any posts advertising fees.

4.Simplicity Broadmoor Tractor

Simplicity Broadmoor Tractor - ride on lawn mowers

This next pick is the Broadmoor Tractor 2691337. There are so many easy to use features of these models that they’re easily one of the best riding mowers to have in your yard.

Pros
  • Cutting Height Adaptability – Use a simple switch to control the electric blades system… you can choose cutting heights between one inch and four inches, which easily improves cut quality of grass clippings. So much ease of use in this model, with stellar blade engagement.
  • Cockpit Features – Rarely do you find a mowing tractor with the ability to provide so many different features to your mowing chores. Thanks to this model, it’s easily a top pick on the market, an easy five out of five.
Cons
  • Rear Engine Riding – The rear wheels seem to make reverse riding quite slow, so it’s harder to mow in reverse.
  • Clogging – Compared to other models such as a Cub Cadet XT1, many users have noticed that the collection and bagging process suffers from clogging, which means it’s harder to use these garden tractors with ease.

5.Swisher Riding Mower

Swisher Riding Mower - cruise control

This next pick is the sleek Swisher ZT2760B model, with a 60 inch cutting desk and 27 HP power. With its sophisticated technology, this model has efficiency to boot and ideal for experts and professionals.

Pros
  • Fuel Tank – With an 8 gallon fuel capacity, this model’s gas tank is absolutely superior. This perfectly complements the Briggs and Stratton Extended Life system, power is not hard to come by and your model will last you for ages. A worthy purchase – don’t waste a dime on other brands.
  • Cutting Deck – The 60 inch, 11 gauge welded steel cutting deck gives you maximum control on your terrain, meaning you can go around corners, trees, and harder to reach areas. Lawns shouldn’t be a tricky operation! This model gives you convenience and reliability.
Cons
  • Maintenance – In order to have max durability, you’ll have to keep up with maintenance on this option. Some also recount that there’s plenty of issues to run into if you’re not super handy.
  • Customer Service – Many Amazon users comment that customer service procedures are tricky and unpleasant. In addition, the warranty procedure is less than clear, compared to others. Do your research, and read the terms and conditions in case you’re caught out.

6.Snapper SPX Tractor Mower

Snapper SPX Tractor Mower - grass clippings

Our sixth pick comes from Snapper, with the 2691453 SPX Tractor Mower in a brilliant red.

Pros
  • Foot Pedals – The foot pedal response rate gives you an amazing amount of control over forward and reverse mowing functions, which includes cruise control.
  • Easy Navigation – With a 14 inch turning radius and an ergonomically friendly contoured steering wheel, you can trim your lawn with ease.
Cons
  • Reputability – A lack of reviews online means it’s hard to estimate how suited this fab machine is to your yard.
  • Customer Service/ Warranty – It’s unclear and not at all transparent what Snapper’s returns and warranty policy is… you may need to do some of this research before you buy.

7.Husqvarna Zero Turn Riding Mower

Husqvarna Zero Turn Riding Mower - lawn mower ride

Another fab pick from Husqvarna, this net listing is the MZ61 61 inch Hydrostatic model.

Pros
  • Steel Deck – The model offers an excellent 11-gauge steel 54 inch cutting deck and is cut with an ergonomically conscious deck lifting system. Cub Cadet has nothing on these lawn mowers.
  • Speed – The 27 HP Briggs Stratton engine provides reliable start ups and offers a fab range of speeds.
Cons
  • Quality Control – Many an owner has unfortunately reported that this machine is a difficult investment, as there have been issues with a rear engine, blades, and other components.
  • Power Supply Issues – One of the more unfortunate properties of this model, users of popular site, Amazon, have noted that there has been an oil leak in the crank case in some of these models.

8.Hustler Turf Equipment Raptor SD

Hustler Turf Equipment Raptor SD - yard machine

Our eighth pick comes from the fabulous Hustler Turf Equipment, it’s the 60″ Raptor with its zero turn technology.

Pros
  • Cutting Deck Options – The model is available in a 48, 54, OR 60 inch cutting deck – meaning you can control exactly what you need and can tailor this piece of expert machinery to your landscape.
  • Powerful Kawasaki V-twin – This model’s power source offers an impressive 24 HP, which is way more than your average 19 HP or 22 HP engine. This delivers a smooth lawn mower ride, less operational noise, and an amazing durability.
Cons
  • Availability – It seems that this stock is so popular that availability has faltered! Keep an eye on the Amazon page to see when this fab lawn raptor will be back in stock.
  • Ergonomics – The ergonomic and comfort details of this machine seem lacklustre compared to other listed models… it seems this lawn tractor is definitely prized for function above all else.

9.Husqvarna Kohler Z-Turn

Husqvarna Kohler Z-Turn - lawn mower rear engine

Our ninth option is yet another model from craftsman geniuses, Husqvarna. It’s the MZ54 FAB Deck Z-Turn model, which comes complete with a 25 HP motor offering 747 cc.

Pros
  • FAB Deck – They don’t call it a fab deck for nothing, this 54 inch mower deck is perfect for all your needs. The control panel is easy to access on this tractor mower, and the deck lift and height adjustment can be easily controlled from this panel.
  • Front wheels – The front wheels appear sturdy and promising, and would hopefully give an effective forward speed for all your mowing jobs.
Cons
  • Packaging and Delivery – Users report that packaging of this model is at least 8 feet in width, meaning you’ll need a lot of extra assistance to unpack this.
  • Reputability – Unfortunately, there is a lack of customer reviews available which means it’s unclear whether this truly makes users satisfied, or if you’d be better scouting something from Home Depot.

10.Simplicity Courier

Simplicity Courier - grass clipping

Another fab pick from Simplicity, this model is the 2691324 Courier in Orange. With its zero turn, it’s an easy choice with lots of control for any mowing and landscaping needs. Simplicity call these models brilliant workhorses in their own right, and our verdict is we have to agree.

Pros
  • Adaptable to Needs – The listing offers a list of different options for these carts, such as horsepower ranging from 21.5 up to 25, and the cutting deck width offering a 42, 48, or 52 inch deck. The fact is, this gives you loads of to fit your needs.
  • Height-of-cut Positions – Guess how many positions there are? Okay, can’t guess? 13! You can go from 1.5 to 4.5 inches, but that’s just shy of some of the more standard units such as 1.25 or 1.3 inches.
Cons
  • Deck Size – Whilst there are a range of deck sizes to choose from which tailors to your usage, be aware that a larger deck size weakens maneuverability, and generally makes this model quote bulky… you could end up hauling it around if you’re not careful.
  • Price Point – Compared to its competitors, this model ranks as slightly pricier – making price one of the negative points when considering this model… you want something that will pack a punch but won’t break the bank.

11.Hustler Turf Raptor 42/52 Inch

Hustler Turf Raptor 42/52 Inch - troy bilt lawn mower

No, you’re not seeing a repeat listing! Whilst this model is generally similar to the other Hustler we listed earlier, there are some subtle differences – this is the Hustler Turf Equipment Raptor in 42 or 52″.

Pros
  • Deck Size – Given that the deck size on this Hustler is smaller than its counterparts, this means that you’re less prone to damage because you won’t run into problems with maneuverability… this machine is perfect for a smaller environment, such as trimming around your shrubs.
  • Steering Control – Another feature that increases maneuverability, on par with some of the best machines, this Raptor has SmoothTrak Steering technology, meaning your steering wheel control will be smooth, seamless, and easy.
Cons
  • Hydrostatic Transmission – This model’s hydrostatic transmission is slightly weaker than others, meaning you can’t collect heavy loads and will have to empty/ clean more frequently.
  • Foot Deck – Many users report holes in the foot deck which serve as outlets for grass and dirt. Be careful!

12.Simplicity Conquest Tractor

Simplicity Conquest Tractor - best riding lawn mower

This pick is the Simplicity Conquest 2691339, and it has a load of cool options for you to check out!

Pros
  • Steering – Steering controls are smooth and effortless and this means you can trim even the hardest to reach areas! No match for other brands.
  • Deck Durability – The free floating signature deck follows your lawn’s contours and provides a scalp free cult, whilst the 10-gauge steel material offers lasting durability.
Cons
  • Price – As mentioned previously, Simplicity can be deemed a bit pricier than other providers.
  • Stability – On tougher terrains, the model can be a little harder to navigate, and can cause troubled strain in trimming grass.

13.Husqvarna Kawasaki 42 in.

Husqvarna Kawasaki 42 in. - ride on lawn mower

It seems we can’t get enough of Husqvarna! This is another that uses the powerful Kawasaki system, and is the Z242F model, offering an 18 horsepower power rating, with zero turn technology.

Pros
  • Speed Settings – This handy model provides reliable start ups and a maximum speed of 6.5 mph! Make sure you keep an eye on cruise control.
  • Brake System – The patent-pending brake system automatically activates or deactivates according to whether the steering levers are moved in or out.
Cons
  • Operation – Some users report that this machine is a little less adapted to maneuvering around small spaces and is therefore hard to operate.
  • Push Lever Levels – There’s also reports of the push levers being unequal – the right lever is sometimes too tight.

14.Snapper Classic

Snapper Classic - cheap riding lawn mower

This fab red number is the Snapper Classic RER with 11.5 HP. It’s a fab competitor to big name brands like Troy Bilt or Cub Cadet.

Pros
  • Stand-on-Edge Feature – This handy feature means that you can store this model vertically – it’s therefore simpler to maintain and takes up less room in storage compared to a bulky lawn tractor.
  • Power System – With a 4-cycle OHV power system, you’re bound to have both power and choice in the usage of this handy mower.
Cons
  • Speed – The one thing this model doesn’t have on competitors like Troy Bilt or Cub Cadet is its speed… the 11.5 HP maximum is considerably lower than other machines.
  • Cutting Deck – The cutting deck is narrower than the wheels are spaced, which means that you can’t really cut close to objects with any real precision… perhaps a lawn tractor would be better after all.

15.MTD Gold Lawn Tractor

MTD Gold Lawn Tractor - hydrostatic transmission

Our final option is the MTD Gold 18.5 HP lawn tractor! It comes with a 42 inch cutting capability, and it’s noted as a best price deal by many, and it has many cool features, such as mulching, that make it worthy of this title. MTD is a well known manufacturer with the esteem of more famous makes like Cub Cadet.

Pros
  • Horsepower – With an 18.5 HP, you can easily cut through 8-10 inches in an easy sweep. In some places, you can buy this model with 20 HP and a 42 inch cut.
  • Entry Level Suitability – This lawn tractor is perfect for all abilities, even those at entry level. Perhaps the perfect first time purchase! Don’t waste your time with retailers like Troy Bilt. Nab this model with its 42 inch twin blade deck.
Cons
  • Customer Service – Users report a reluctance of the company to honor the 2 year warranty system, so you’re in hot water if you want to make a return.
  • Lack of Reviews – The lack of reviews on this model means it’s hard for us to tell you just how worth your dime it is.

Best Budget Lawn Mower

Our best budget pick is number 12, the Simplicity Conquest 2691339. With durability, precision, and a bunch of other amazing features, there’s nothing you can’t like about this wonder tractor. This is definitely the best riding lawn mower for the money.

Best Budget Lawn Mower - lawn mower turning radius

Cheapest Riding Mower Available

Our cheapest available is the Husqvarna Z254 Kohler Hydrostatic Zero Turn – it’s a bargain price and offers lots of important features, such as 26 HP power and hydrostatic transmission! Don’t miss out, buy this budget buy today.

Cheapest Riding Mower Available - best budget riding lawn mower

What is the best riding mower for 1 acre?

The best mower for those smaller, manageable areas has to be pick 6, the Snapper SPX Tractor Mower… it’s easily maneuverable and has the perfect turning radius to ensure you can reach those hard to navigate areas.

What is the best riding mower for 1 acre? - ride on lawnmowers

Where to buy riding lawn mowers at discounted Prices

There are lots of different places for you to buy riding mowers at for a cheaper price, such as online retailers like Amazon or in-store at stores like Home Depot. There really are many options for you to get the machine that suits you best.