How about we let the devs focus on new content? . I mean footfall has already been tweaked, people.
With the amount of builds available in the game and the current players numbers, it is not as easy (not for everyone at least) to live solely off and be rich from footfall only unless you own many plots in many hot spots. Plus, running a shop is probably a better way (imo) to become rich. As you mentioned, keeping the shop/land functional and the portals open is already a grind. Why add to it?
As Vetteq mentioned, tying the beacons to the account rather than characters may solve this.