Whether you’re a baby boomer, a Gen Xer, or a millennial, getting the most from your savings and building confidence in the promise of a long, healthy life is a goal we all share. It doesn’t matter if retirement is a few years or a few decades away—the decisions you make now can have a dramatic impact on the quality of your life down the road. That’s why, in this month’s issue, we take a comprehensive look at the new realities that are shaping retirement planning, including the shifting landscape of pensions, annuities, and investment strategies. And we offer advice on what you can do to get ahead of the curve and take control of your future. Inside, you’ll find tools to help plan your monthly retirement income and maximize your Social Security benefits, tips on avoiding hidden fees and common financial scams, and saving strategies for every age group. In addition, you’ll be able to read up on how CR is working to make retirement easier for consumers everywhere by fighting financial elder abuse, increasing fiscal education, and pushing for stronger rules to safeguard your savings from predatory reverse mortgages and financial advisers who aren’t always serving your best interests.

And because peace of mind isn’t only a question of long-term planning, we’re offering solutions for overcoming short-term challenges, too, with guidance on the best child car seats to protect your growing family, a new report on avoiding infections in the hospital, and advice on confronting a surprising risk of heart surgery—so no matter where you are in life, you can make smarter choices with an eye on the future.

Editor's Note: This article also appeared in the January 2017 issue of Consumer Reports magazine.