The sales have fallen in other parts of the country as well, although at relatively slower rates, found the study conducted by property research firm PropEquity.
The decline in housing sales was the highest in Mumbai at 58 per cent, followed by 57 per cent in Delhi-NCR and by 18 per cent in Bangalore, the third major property market.
The data includes housing sales figures for homes sold by the builders and not the secondary market re-sell deals.
"... residential unit absorption numbers in the first quarter in the National Capital Region (NCR) and Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR), plunged over 50 per cent due to economic slowdown," the research firm said in a statement.
PropEquity founder and CEO Samir Jasuja attributed the sharp fall in housing sales to "uncertainty in economic environment, high property prices and execution delays".
The land acquisition controversy in Noida Extension, part of Greater Noida, played a major role in steep fall in housing sales in the NCR, he pointed out.
"Mumbai and Gurgaon have already seen one of the sharpest falls in absorptions, with MMR seeing a drop of 58 per cent and NCR with a drop of 57 per cent. If this trend continues, there could be 'stage 1' price correction in the range of 5 per cent to 20 per cent, especially in micro-markets of NCR, MMR and Hyderabad," Jasuja said.
As per the data, the total absorption in NCR has dropped to 15,104 units in the first quarter of 2012 from 35,420 units in the year-ago period. The total supply was 1,07,731 units.
In MMR, the total absorption fell in the first quarter of 2012 to 11,473 units from 27,676 units in the corresponding period of last year. The total supply was 89,461 units.
However, Bangalore has relatively performed better and witnessed a drop in absorption by only 18 per cent to 7,704 units from 9,410 units in the year-ago period.
"The take-up rates in key micro-markets have fallen significantly. In the coming Quarter, there would be strong pressures on many micro-markets and we expect inventory overhang to increase and absorption could continue to slow down," Jasuja said.
In the NCR, absorptions have fallen to 5,547 units in January-March 2012 in Gurgaon from 9,242 units in the same period last year. Noida witnessed a drop in absorption to 4,848 units from 9,160 units.
The housing sales have plunged to 1,050 units in Greater Noida from 12,163 units in the year-ago period. The absorption in Ghaziabad fell marginally to 3,201 units from 3,433 units.
In Delhi, only 12 units were absorbed in January-March 2012 against 512 units in the year-ago period, while Faridabad saw absorption of 446 units against 910 units in the review period.